Happy birthday to Frank Drake!

Happy birthday to Frank Drake!

The "Father of SETI" marks another circuit around the Sun.


On behalf of everyone at the SETI Institute, we want to take a moment to say happy birthday to Frank Drake!

Known as the “father of SETI science,” Frank is the creator of the Drake Equation, which he wrote in 1961 to stimulate dialogue about the search for extraterrestrial intelligence:

You can learn more about the Drake Equation here.

Frank Drake made the first modern SETI experiment using radio astronomy observations in 1960 as part of Project Ozma, examining the stars Tau Ceti and Epsilon Eridani. Today, Frank continues to investigate radio telescope designs that optimize the chances of success, and is Professor Emeritus of Astronomy and Astrophysics at University of California, Santa Cruz (after serving leadership roles including Dean, Natural Sciences Division and Acting Associate Vice Chancellor, Advancement).

frank drake

Frank has been a leader at the SETI Institute from its inception in 1984 and was the first President of the Board of Trustees. We are privileged to work alongside him and to continue his pioneering work. The SETI Institute would not be what it is today without the benefit of his leadership, vision, and passion. 

Please join us is wishing Frank the happiest of birthdays!