Humans could make contact with aliens within 12 years
Whether alien life exists or not could be confirmed by 2024 with the development of a supersized 1.3bn-pound radio telescope.
Former Ministry of Defence UFO Project leader Nick Pope, said that the development of the Square Kilometer Array (SKA) telescope would reveal "new and exciting possibilities," the Daily Express reported.
If everything goes according to plan the Square Kilometre Array will be fully operational and humans could be able to make contact with aliens within 12 years, said Pope, who studied UFO sightings at the MoD for 21 years.
The SKA, to be started in 2016, is set to be the world's largest radio telescope and will answer some of the fundamental unanswered questions of our universe.
Made up of thousands of radio wave receptors covering 1,900 square miles of the Earth's surface in the Australian outback, scientists have claimed it will provide alternative views of the Universe than those seen with optical telescopes.
Scientists leading its development have suggested the SKA will be 50 times more sensitive, and will survey the sky 10 000 times faster, than any other telescope.
According to a spokesman for the SKA, it will give astronomers insight into the formation and evolution of the first stars and galaxies after the Big Bang, the role of cosmic magnetism, the nature of gravity and possibly even life beyond.