Google Doodle celebrates first interstellar message by humankind
Lucknow: On Nov 16 1974, scientists sent humanity’s first, three-minute long interstellar radio message ‘The Arecibo Message’ some 25,000 light years away. Today search giant Google celebrates 44th anniversary of this scientific achievement with its Doodle.
The Arecibo message-interstellar radio message- was sent into space, encoded with several information about humanity so that extraterrestrial intelligence could receive and decipher it. Since, this message would reach its destination in 25,000 light years and similar time to receive a reply, it could be said that it was just a demonstration of human technological advancement rather than an attempt to set up a real communication with extraterrestrials.
The radio message carrying basic information about humanity and Earth was sent to globular star ‘cluster M13’ which is 25,000 light years away.
The message consists of seven encoded parts with different colors signifying different parts of the message:
#Mathematical numbers from One (1) to Ten (10).
#The atomic numbers of the elements hydrogen, carbon, nitrogen, oxygen, and phosphorus, which make up deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA).
#The formulas for the sugars and bases in the nucleotides of DNA.
#The number of nucleotides in DNA, and a graphic of the double helix structure of DNA.
#A graphic figure of a human with physical height of an average man, and the human population of Earth.
#A graphic of our Solar System with the location of the planet from where the message has been sent.
#A graphic of the Arecibo radio telescope and the physical diameter of the transmitting antenna dish.
It had exactly 1,679 binary digits (210 bytes) which, if arranged in a specific way, can explain basic information about humanity and earth to extraterrestrial beings.
The message was broadcast into space a single time via frequency modulated radio waves.
The message was written by Astronomer and astrophysicist Frank Drake from Cornell University with the help from American astronomer Carl Sagan and others.
“It was a strictly symbolic event, to show that we could do it,” Cornell University professor Donald Campbell was quoted as saying in an Independent report.
Humans have been sending interstellar radio message into space for quit so long. The messages are sent in hope to come in contact with extraterrestrial intelligent beings so we could learn and explore more about us and our universe.