The Beatles hit (well, quite successful anyway) Across the Universe will be the first song to be beamed directly into space next week, Nasa has announced. The track will be beamed directly through the Deep Space Network on the 40th anniversary of the song being recorded.
The beam of the song (being sent through space) will be aimed at North Star, Polaris, which is approximately 431 light years away from the Earth. That is, by all accounts, quite far away really! Paul McCartney has said that it’s an ‘amazing’ feat.
Interestingly, this isn’t part of the SETI collection of projects but in fact a celebration of 50 years of Nasa. So, what exactly can we expect in the future from the Space Agency?
Well, there’s ongoing surveys of Mars and Saturn, journeys to Mercury and Pluto (unmanned of course) and the Mars 2011 mission. This could actually see people landing on another planet, which by all accounts is set to be a really rather special event.
So, what do I make of this particular song being beamed into space and possibly being picked up? Well, let’s take a look at some of the lyrics:
‘Words are flying out like
endless rain into a paper cup
They slither while they pass
They slip away across the universe
Pools of sorrow waves of joy
are drifting thorough my open mind
Possessing and caressing me’
Well, it’s not exactly Romantic classical music now is it? Far from me to denigrate the Beatles but I just have a feeling that ‘greys’ might prefer to hear some Mendelssohn. Maybe that’s just me though. If you were going to beam something into space that might get heard, what would you send? I think it would have to the sound of whale music for me. You can’t go wrong with a bit of Star Trek influenced sci-fi!