Red Dwarfs -- not to be mistaken for white dwarfs -- make up a vast majority of stars in the Milky Way galaxy, roughly 75 percent of them in fact, according to SETI Institute astronomer, Seth Shostak. And the fact that they are far older than our Sun means that the planets orbiting them have had plenty of time to develop intelligent civilizations.
Using the Allen Telescope Array in Northern California, the Institute figures that its red dwarf survey should take about two years to complete. "We'll scrutinize targeted systems over several frequency bands between 1 and 10 GHz," Institute scientist Gerry Harp said in a statement. "Roughly half of those bands will be at so-called 'magic frequencies' -- places on the radio dial that are directly related to basic mathematical constants. It's reasonable to speculate that extraterrestrials trying to attract attention might generate signals at such special frequencies."