Towards an All-Sky Radio SETI Telescope

29-31 October 2018, University of Manchester

Since the first SETI (Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence) observations began almost 60 years ago, radio telescopes and the associated techniques have made enormous progress, especially in terms of ever increasing sensitivity, frequency resolution, bandwidth and data processing capacity. In one area, instantaneous field of view (FoV), more limited gains have been achieved. If intelligent life and indeed technological civilisations are fundamentally rare, instruments with a much larger instantaneous field of view may be extremely important in detecting infrequent, possibly transitory SETI signals. The ultimate goal would be to realise an "all-sky" radio SETI capability, observing all of the sky, all of the time.

Over the last decade, instruments with large fields-of-view have began to appear, especially at long wavelengths (> 1 metre) e.g. MWA, LWA and LOFAR. A similar capability at cm-wavelengths, would be extremely interesting for SETI research. This meeting aimed to address the topic of current and future wide-field SETI searches at radio wavelengths, with the goal of producing an inventory of the various international wide-field radio telescope projects and developments that are currently underway or being proposed.

Live Stream of Workshop

Day 1 - Video - courtesy of the Square Kilometre Array (content begins 00:31:06)

Day 2 - Video - courtesy of University of Manchester Media Services

Day 3 - Morning Video / Afternoon Video


Monday 29th October

Council Chamber, Square Kilometre Array Headquarters, Jodrell Bank

14.30 "What is that?" The Discovery of Pulsars - Jocelyn Bell Burnell    
15.00 The SKA – Phil Diamond    
15.30 Wide-field Radio Astronomy – a historical perspective – Arnold van Ardenne PDF - Arnold van Ardenne White Paper - van Ardenne 
16.00 Workshop scene setting – M.A. Garrett PDF - Workshop Introduction  

Tuesday 30th October

Bell Burnell Lecture Theatre, Schuster Building, University of Manchester.

09.30 An Overview of the Breakthrough Listen Initiative – A. Siemion PDF - Andrew Siemion  
10.00 Bayesian inference from all‐sky SETI surveys - Claudio Grimaldi PDF - Claudio Grimaldi White Paper - Grimaldi
11.00 Impulsive Interference from Digital Devices – Ralph Spencer, Hongying Chen PDF - Ralph Spencer, Hongying Chen White Paper - Spencer
11.30 LASA and WFBT: Two Concepts for an All‐Sky Radio Transient Telescope - Ryan Lynch PDF - Ryan Lynch White Paper - Lynch
12.00 SETI (near and far) using long baseline interferometers – Michael Garrett PDF - Michael Garrett White Paper - Garrett
14.00 SETI 2020: Omnidirectional SETI System – Jill Tarter PDF - Jill Tarter  
14.30 All‐Sky Multimode Antennas - David Prinsloo PDF - David Prinsloo White Paper - Prinsloo
15.00 A SETI study of the Solar Neighborhood with LOFAR - Emilio Enriquez PDF - Emilio Enriquez White Paper - Enriquez
16.00 SKA low status – Andre van Es PDF - André van Es

Wednesday 31st October

Bell Burnell Lecture Theatre, Schuster Building, University of Manchester.

09.30 RAAIR and SETI – David Zhang White Paper - Zhang
10.00 The Case for Targeting SETI - William Edmondson PDF - William Edmondson White Paper - Edmondson
11.00 Artificial Intelligence for SETI Signal Recognition - Yunfan Zhang PDF - Yunfan Zhang  
11.30 Cyclic Imaging: Interferometric Detection and Localisation of Wideband Engineered Signals – Ian Morrison PDF - Ian Morrison White Paper - Morrison 
12.00 Breakthrough Listen on LOFAR – Griffin Foster PDF - Griffin Foster White Paper - Foster
14.00 The principle of mutual detectability for SETI searches - Eamonn Kerins PDF - Andreea Dogaru, Eamonn Kerins, Iain McDonald  
14.30 Design Options for Ultra Wide Field Decimeter Wavelength Telescope Arrays – Dan Werthimer, David DeBoer, Ron Ekers, Gregg Hallinan, Jack Hickish, Vikram Ravi, Tasso Tzioumis    
16.00 Workshop summary – Steve Croft PDF - Steve Croft  
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