Daniela de Paulis initiates the idea for “A Sign in Space” while working on a plan for an art project to upload on a satellite.

On 3 June 2020, “A Sign in Space” receives the official endorsement of INAF.

On 5 August 2020, Daniela receives the Baruch Blumberg Fellowship in Astrobiology to develop a “Sign in Space” at the Green Bank Observatory in West Virginia.

On 29 June 2022, Daniela presents the project as part of her talk for the SETI conference “Assembly of the Order of the Octopus”, hosted by The Pennsylvania State University

On 30 June 2021, the D-Orbit ‘ION Scv Dauntless David’ satellite launches into space onboard a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket and on 30 July 2021, while orbiting at a distance of approximately 500 km. The satellite transmits the Arecibo message towards Earth from 15:55 to 16:00 CEST.

The Arecibo message transmitted by the D-Orbit satellite, is received by one of the antennas at the Medicina Radio Observatory and by the small, multidirectional Vivaldi antennas at the Sardinia Radio Observatory. This first successful experiment for A Sign in Spaceis reported by a press release issued by Media INAF and D-Orbit.

In March 2021, Daniel extends the collaboration to retired ESA Spacecraft Operations Manager Paolo Ferri who takes the project further, expanding the scientific team with Tiago Loureiro (ESA Space Operations Engineer), Peter Schmidt (ESA Spacecraft Operations Manager), Olivier Reboud (Mars Express Operation Engineer), Daniel Firre (ESA Ground Operation Engineer), Johannes Bauer (ESA Spacecraft Operations Engineer).

On 27 July 2021 Daniela initiates the monthly meetings with specialists from the fields of SETI, astronomy, astrobiology, philosophy, anthropology, space studies and art. The team of specialists keeps growing over the months, eventually including 28 advisors. The active members of the team are (in order of arrival in the team):

The monthly meetings help shape the project with the advisors providing some useful feedback and insights into current fields of research related to SETI. The aim of the meetings is also that of generating cutting edge ideas for composing the simulated extraterrestrial signal. As part of the monthly sessions, poet Gregory Betts  suggests involving his network in the creative writing community. The monthly sessions end on 2 December 2022.

On 24 March 2022, the project is officially endorsed by the SETI Institute as part of their SETI AiR programme.

On 19 September 2022, Daniela presents “A Sign in Space” as part of the Billingham Cutting Edge Lecture at the International Astronautical Congress in Paris, publishing a paper in collaboration with some of the key scientists.

On 3 May 2023, the Green Bank Telescope and the Allen Telescope Array take part in a follow up test, with ESA’s TGO transmitting a message towards Earth. Both observatories successfully receive the signal.

Join us on Discord

Follow the discussion on