5 minute read

Reviewing the literature is an important part of the research process. It gives you a deeper knowledge of the field and prevents you re-inventing the wheel. As part of my open research project (currently focussed on exoplanet technosignatures) I am documenting my review of the literature by writing summaries of important concepts and interesting papers I come across.

It is a good idea to read some historical papers when getting to know a new field. Early papers put more recent studies into context and ensure that you are not relying on citations that may or may not accurately represent previous research. There are always key references that are cited over and over again. It is also interesting to see how attitudes to different ideas change over time.

After reading a few modern studies, I decided to refocus my efforts on some classic SETI papers to get a better grounding in how the field began.

This post tracks the papers I and have read together with my core “to-read” list. This list is incomplete and dynamic since there will always be new citation trails to follow as I read more papers.

For each paper I’ve read I include links to the publication followed by links to my notes and/or notebooks.

Technosignature papers read

Technosignature papers to-read

  1. Lord S, Dixon R, Healy T: Project OASIS: The Design of a Signal Detector for the Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence. 1981.
  2. Sagan C: Extraterrestrial Intelligence: An International Petition. Science 1982, 218:426–426.
  3. Sagan C, Newman WI: The Solipsist Approach to Extraterrestrial Intelligence. Quarterly Journal of the Royal Astronomical Society 1983, 24:113.
  4. Townes CH: At what wavelengths should we search for signals from extraterrestrial intelligence? 1983, doi:https://doi.org/10.1073/pnas.80.4.1147.
  5. Horowitz P, Sagan C, Horowitz P, Sagan C: Five Years of Project META: an All-Sky Narrow-Band Radio Search for Extraterrestrial Signals. ApJ 1993, 415:218.
  7. Tarter JC, Agrawal A, Ackermann R, Backus P, Blair SK, Bradford MT, Harp GR, Jordan J, Kilsdonk T, Smolek KE, et al.: SETI turns 50: five decades of progress in the search for extraterrestrial intelligence. 2010, 7819:781902.
  8. Shuch HP: Searching for Extraterrestrial Intelligence: SETI Past, Present, and Future. Springer Berlin Heidelberg; 2011.
  9. Isaacson H, Siemion APV, Marcy GW, Lebofsky M, Price DC, MacMahon D, Croft S, DeBoer D, Hickish J, Werthimer D, et al.: The Breakthrough Listen Search for Intelligent Life: Target Selection of Nearby Stars and Galaxies. PASP 2017, 129:054501.
  10. Worden SP, Drew J, Siemion A, Werthimer D, DeBoer D, Croft S, MacMahon D, Lebofsky M, Isaacson H, Hickish J, et al.: Breakthrough Listen – A new search for life in the universe. Acta Astronautica 2017, 139:98–101.
  11. Wright JT, Kanodia S, Lubar E: How Much SETI Has Been Done? Finding Needles in the n-dimensional Cosmic Haystack. AJ 2018, 156:260.
  12. Lebofsky M, Croft S, Siemion APV, Price DC, Enriquez JE, Isaacson H, MacMahon DHE, Anderson D, Brzycki B, Cobb J, et al.: The Breakthrough Listen Search for Intelligent Life: Public Data, Formats, Reduction and Archiving. PASP 2019, 131:124505.
  13. Price DC, Enriquez JE, Brzycki B, Croft S, Czech D, DeBoer D, DeMarines J, Foster G, Gajjar V, Gizani N, et al.: The Breakthrough Listen Search for Intelligent Life: Observations of 1327 Nearby Stars Over 1.10–3.45 GHz. The Astronomical Journal 2020, 159:86.
  14. Sheikh SZ, Siemion A, Enriquez JE, Price DC, Isaacson H, Lebofsky M, Gajjar V, Kalas P: The Breakthrough Listen Search for Intelligent Life: A 3.95-8.00 GHz Search for Radio Technosignatures in the Restricted Earth Transit Zone. AJ 2020, 160:29.
  15. Wright J: Dyson spheres. Serb Astron J 2020, doi:10.2298/SAJ2000001W.
  16. Traas R, Croft S, Gajjar V, Isaacson H, Lebofsky M, MacMahon DHE, Perez K, Price DC, Sheikh S, Siemion APV, et al.: The Breakthrough Listen Search for Intelligent Life: Searching for Technosignatures in Observations of TESS Targets of Interest. AJ 2021, 161:286.

Online lists of technosignature papers