W1HFA To Present At Science On Screen, 12/01/08

Very Large Array radiotelescopeScience on Screen at the Coolidge Corner Theatre in Brookline explores the possibility of life beyond Earth with a screening of CONTACT, Robert Zemeckis’s 1997 big-screen adaptation of Carl Sagan’s novel, on Monday, Dec. 1 at 7:00 p.m. Before the film, astrophysicist Paul Horowitz (W1HFA) will give a talk on the search for extraterrestrial intelligence (SETI). A true pioneer in this field, Horowitz and his work are believed to have been the inspiration for Sagan’s novel.

In CONTACT, Dr. Eleanor “Ellie” Arroway (Jodie Foster) is a free thinker seeking evidence of the existence of extraterrestrial life by listening for contact via radio astronomy. [As a very-YL ham operator in the movie, Arroway makes HF radio contacts as W9GFO.] Many years later, when Ellie discovers an intelligent message from deep space, her assumptions regarding science and spirituality are challenged, and she must decide whether to play it safe or risk her life in order to make first contact. (1997, 2h33m)

Paul Horowitz is Professor of Physics and of Electrical Engineering at Harvard. His research group is focused on several problems in experimental astrophysics, including the search for intentional radio signals or laser flashes from extraterrestrial intelligent civilizations. The group’s evolving SETI effort has inspired groundbreaking experiments at Harvard, including a 250-million-channel radio receiving system and a pair of optical searches that process a trillion measurements per second (the equivalent of the contents of all books in print, every second). Also renowned for his work in electronics design, Dr. Horowitz is the co-author of the bestselling book, The Art of Electronics.

With Science on Screen, the Coolidge presents a feature film or documentary with a basis in science, paired with exciting introductions by notable scientific figures. This monthly series is co-presented by The Museum of Science, Boston and New Scientist magazine.

Science on Screen programs are $9.75 regular admission or $7.75 for seniors, students, and Museum of Science members. Members of the Coolidge Corner Theatre get free admission to these shows. Tickets are available in advance at the box office, located at 290 Harvard Street in Brookline, or on-line at http://www.coolidge.org/showtimes .

For more details, visit: www.coolidge.org/science or call 617/734-2500.

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