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Who We Are: Chandra Wickramasinghe

Dr. Chandra Wickramasinghe is an astronomer who has made pioneering contributions to several branches of astronomy, including the theory of cosmic dust. Jointly with the late Sir Fred Hoyle, he proposed the modern theory of cosmic life. A deep revolution in scientific thought that changes the way we view ourselves, this theory is being confirmed by the results of space exploration. The theory implies that alien intelligence may not be as alien as we once thought; ETI-human communication may therefore be reasonably easy. In 1986 he was awarded the International Dag Hammarskjold Gold Medal for Science and in 1992 he was decorated by the President of Sri Lanka with the titular honour of Vidya Jyothi. Together with Sir Arthur C. Clarke, he was awarded the International Sahabdeen Prize for Science in 1996. His keynote address opened the 2001 optical SETI conference and his banquet speech concluded the 2002 SETI League conference. He holds an earned doctorate (ScD) from the University of Cambridge and an honorary doctorate from the Soka University of Tokyo. Formerly a Fellow of Jesus College Cambridge, he is now Professor of Applied Mathematics and Astronomy and head of the Centre for Astrobiology at Cardiff University of Wales. He is an award-winning poet and the author or co-author of more than 20 books and 250 scientific papers. He is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts and a Fellow of the Royal Astronomical Society. Chandra Wickramasinghe

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