SETI 的历史 - 6

Youth讨论 | 贡献2010年7月29日 (四) 07:42的版本
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<资料来源:The Planetary Society>

第6章:Green Bank 的海豚会议

In November of 1960, a highly select group of physical scientists and engineers made its way to the remote hills of West Virginia for a small informal conference. The meeting was convened in Green Bank under the auspices of the National Academy of Science, to discuss a question that was only just gaining scientific respectability: what are the prospects of establishing contact with other worlds? It is a measure of just how risky the topic was considered, that it was decided not to announce the conference, and no official publication followed the meeting.

1960 年 11 月,一群经过选定的物理学家和工程师聚集到西弗吉尼亚的偏远山区开了一个小型的非正式会议。这次会议由美国国家科学院主持,在 Green Bank 召开,而会议讨论的主题才刚刚开始引起科学界的注意:与其他世界建立通讯联系的前景怎么样?考虑到会议内容可能引发的诸多问题,组织方决定不对外公开这次会议的情况,也不会有任何相关的出版物会发表。

20 世纪 60 年代时的 Carl Sagan

The conference was organized by J.P.T. Pearman of the Science Board of the National Academy of Science. The other ten attendees included Dana Atcheley, president of Microwave Associates, who donated the parametric amplifier to Project Ozma; Melvin Calvin, a world renowned biochemist who studied the origins of life; Bernard Oliver, Vice President for Research and Development at Hewlett-Packard; Carl Sagan, then a young astronomer at Cornell; Phillip Morrison, author with Giuseppe Cocconi of the Nature article which launched modern SETI; Giuseppe Cocconi; Frank Drake, of Ozma Project fame; Su Shu Huang, astronomer and expert on extrasolar planets, and his former teacher, Otto Struve, director of the Green Bank observatory and host of the conference; and John Lilly, who had recently published his controversial Man and Dolphin arguing that dolphins are an intelligent species. It was in a jesting tribute to Lilly's celebrated work that the conference attendees styled themselves "The Order of the Dolphins."

会议由美国国家科学院科学委员会的 J.P.T. Pearman 组织。其他与会人员包括:Dana Atcheley,Microwave Associates 的总裁,向 Ozma 项目捐助了参量放大器(Parametric Amplifier);Melvin Calvin,世界知名的生物化学家,主要研究生命的起源;Bernard Oliver,HP 公司研发部的副总裁;Carl Sagan,那时还是 Cornell 大学一名年轻的天文学家;Phillip Morrison,和 Giuseppe Cocconi 撰写了 Nature 上那篇标志着现代 SETI 起源的文章;Giuseppe Cocconi;Frank Drake,因为 Ozma 项目而出名;Su Shu Huang,天文学家,是研究太阳系外行星的专家,和他以前的老师,Otto Struve,Green Bank 观测站的负责人,也是本次会议的主办方;还有 John Lilly,不久前刚发表了他认为海豚是比人类更具智慧的特种的观点。出于对 Lilly 那项知名工作的致敬,与会人员戏称他们自己为“海豚社”:)

For the development of SETI, the meeting was a momentous event. For the first time, the possibility of communication with alien civilizations was being seriously discussed by some of the world's most prominent scientists. So prominent, in fact, that one of them, Melvin Calvin, was awarded the Nobel Prize in Chemistry during the course of the conference. "It was wonderful," Sagan recalled in a 1993 interview, " . . . these good scientists all saying that it wasn't nonsense to think about the subject. There was such a heady sense in the air that finally we've penetrated the ridicule barrier . . . It was like this 180 degree flip of this dark secret, this embarrassment. It suddenly became respectable."

对于 SETI 的发展过程,这次会议可算是一次标志性的事件。关于与外星文明通讯的可能性,历史上第一次的,由世界上最有名望的一些科学家进行了认真的讨论。他们其中的一个,Melvin Calvin,甚至在会议期间赢得了诺贝尔化学奖。Sagan 在 1993 年的访谈中回忆到:“真的太棒了...这些顶级的科学家都认为这个主题是值得思考的。当我们最终跨越了那令人感觉荒诞的障碍之后,气氛真的变得很是振奋人心...就好像把秘密也好、困窘也好,都来了个 180 度的大翻转,所有的工作都开始受到尊重。”

第5章:Ozma 项目 - 搜索 ← | → 第7章:德雷克方程的诞生