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The radio telescope in Parkes, Australia is used by SETI researchers to search for potentially alien radio transmissions. TORSTEN BLACKWOOD/AFP via Getty Images hide caption

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TORSTEN BLACKWOOD/AFP via Getty Images

Did E.T. Phone Us?

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Much of the movie 'Contact' was filmed at the Very Large Array in New Mexico. Erin Slonaker/Moment Editorial/Getty Images hide caption

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Erin Slonaker/Moment Editorial/Getty Images

This artist's view shows an exoplanet orbiting the young star Beta Pictoris. The exoplanet has an eight-hour day — and a much faster rotation than any planet in the solar system. L. Calçada/N. Risinger/ESO hide caption

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L. Calçada/N. Risinger/ESO

Taking Stock In The Search For Aliens

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A visit to Jupiter's moon Europa in the 2020s is among the upcoming NASA missions that have real potential to search for "biosignatures," or substances that provide evidence of life. NASA/JPL hide caption

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NASA/JPL

If You're Looking For Alien Life, How Will You Know If You've Found it?

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Radio telescopes of the Allen Telescope Array are seen in Hat Creek, Calif. A signal that intrigued scientists has been found to have its roots on Earth, Russian scientists say. Ben Margot/AP hide caption

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Ben Margot/AP