MES­SAGES TO ET

BBC Earth (Asia) - - Science -

Bolted to the un­der­side of each of the Voy­ager probes is a 12-inch gold-plated cop­per disc, the Golden Record. It’s a time cap­sule of Earth as it was in 1977, laden with im­ages, mu­sic and di­a­grams: a mes­sage for any alien civil­i­sa­tion that might chance across it.

The con­tents of­fer a snap­shot of hu­man life and our place in the Uni­verse. Among its

116 im­ages (five of which are shown here) are de­pic­tions of hu­man anatomy, plants and an­i­mals, land­scapes and scenes of ev­ery­day life. There are au­dio greet­ings in 55 lan­guages, some ‘Earth sounds’ and 90 min­utes of mu­sic, in­clud­ing works by Beethoven, Mozart and Bach, a Navajo chant, a Peru­vian wed­ding song and Chuck Berry’s Johnny B. Goode. It also car­ries a record­ing of the brain­waves of Voy­ager team mem­ber Ann Druyan, in the hope that an­other race might be able to de­ci­pher them.

1 Eat up!

This un­usual im­age demon­strates how we lick, eat and drink. You drink like this too, right?

2 Won­der­ful wildlife

Pic­tures of our planet’s an­i­mals in­clude dol­phins, an ea­gle, a croc­o­dile, an ele­phant, and this cute toad.

3 So­lar spec­trum

The disc fea­tures the Sun’s spec­trum of light in vis­i­ble colours, per­haps to help aliens iden­tify the Sun.

4 Engi­neer­ing mar­vel

The Great Wall of China is one of our most fa­mous struc­tures. De­spite ru­mours, it is not vis­i­ble from space.

5 Hu­man ath­leti­cism

Sport­ing ac­tiv­i­ties fea­ture in sev­eral im­ages – also in­cluded are pho­tos of run­ners and a moun­tain climber.

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