Cosmic рᴜгѕᴜіt: A Russian Billionaire’s $100 Million Odyssey in Search of Extraterrestrial Life

Renowned Russian billionaire Yuri Milner, an early investor in Facebook and Twitter, recently unveiled an ambitious initiative to allocate $100 million in the pursuit of discovering extraterrestrial civilizations.

On July 20, Bloomberg reported the collaboration between Yuri Milner and esteemed cosmologist Stephen Hawking, introducing the “Breakthrough Listening” project. This groundbreaking venture stands as the most extensive scientific undertaking thus far in the quest to detect signs of extraterrestrial life.


At 53 years old, Mr. Milner, a billionaire with a notable financial track record from lucrative investments in internet companies such as Jack Ma’s Alibaba, has amassed billions of dollars. Despite his substantial success in the business world, Mr. Milner has maintained a longstanding passion for astronomy.

“Billionaire Milner affirmed, ‘We are dedicated to applying Silicon Valley methodologies to the quest for intelligent life beyond our planet. Our data approach will be transparent, tapping into the collaborative problem-solving capabilities of social networks.'”

The initiative, spearheaded by a team of researchers from the University of California, Berkeley (USA), is slated to span a 19-year duration. The project will harness the capabilities of two state-of-the-art telescopes: the Green Bank Telescope in West Virginia, USA, and the Parkes Telescope in New South Wales, Australia.

This endeavor encompasses the examination of millions of stars in proximity to Earth, extending the scope to a magnitude ten times greater than the sky surveys conducted in previous research initiatives. At the helm of this ambitious program are esteemed scientists, including Martin Rees, the British Royal Astronomer, and Frank Drake, emeritus professor of astronomy and astrophysics at the University of California.

Furthermore, billionaire Milner unveiled a supplementary initiative titled “Breakthrough Message.” This undertaking commits $1 million to individuals capable of crafting digital messages designed to be transmitted into space, serving as representations of humanity and our planet Earth.

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