Connecting the dots with optical SETI workshop

My name is John Hoang, postdoctoral scholar working at the Berkeley SETI Research Center (BSRC). With help from the team, I recently organized a 2-day workshop to inform the community about several current results and upcoming OSETI activities, as well as to open opportunities for wider involvement. The workshop was thematically divided into 2 days:

Day 1 - State of the art: After opening remarks from BSRC’s Director and the Breakthrough Prize Foundation’s Chairman, the workshop commenced with a talk on the theory behind OSETI observations. Subsequent talks included the latest results from various experiments, followed by updates from instruments capable of OSETI techniques.

Day 2 - State of the future and making it happen: The second day began with a series of talks about upcoming facilities capable of large-scale optical surveys, followed by student engagement and collaborating opportunities at UC Berkeley and beyond. The final part of the workshop was dedicated to open discussions from the workshop’s participants.

For those who couldn’t join the workshop, or only attended partially, we got you covered. The talks and discussions are now publicly available on Youtube.

So where do we go from here? A lot of exciting ideas were generated during this workshop, and many new projects began to take shape. I am also summarizing the workshop's contents into a white paper. In the longer term, there could be a platform to coordinate concurrent observation between telescopes, or a notification system similar to the existing ones such as ATel or GCN to encourage follow-up observation on certain targets of interest. And finally we can perhaps start thinking about organizing similar workshops on a more regular basis.

Image: Pexels / Dick Hoskins