Hong Kong Scientists Join Search for Alien Life
But that may be changing, thanks to a few forward-thinking researchers at the University of Hong Kong (HKU) working at the west end of Hong Kong Island. Since 2016, HKU has been renting space for its Laboratory for Space Research (LSR) at the Cyberport Business Park. And from here, Hong Kong is doing its bit in the search for, among other things, alien life.
Overlooking Telegraph Bay, the LSR, funded by a HK$10.8 million (US$1.4 million) government development grant, conducts research into fields such as astrochemistry, astrobiology, high-energy physics and planetary science.
“I’m trying to secure and grow the LSR so that we can be productive and impactful,” its director, Quentin Parker, explains to me on a recent visit to the lab. “We are striving to be Asia’s global university and we are not ignoring the tremendous potential in the greater world to connect, collaborate and build links,” says the astrophysicist, who points to recent collaborations with Peking University, Zhejiang University and Nanjing University.
In these lively and fascinating essays, scientists from around the world weigh in on the latest advances in the search for intelligent life in the universe and discuss just what that might look like. Since 2000, science has seen a surge in data and interest on several fronts related to E.T. (extraterrestrials); A.I. (artificial intelligence); and SETI (search for extraterrestrial intelligence).
By Bruce Dorminey, SCMP