Nikolai Kardashev

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Nikolai Semenovich Kardashev (Никола́й Семёнович Кардашёв) (born April 25, 1932 in Moscow) is a Soviet astrophysicist, and is the deputy director of the Russian Space Research Institute (sometimes translated as The Institute for Cosmic Research) of the Russian Academy of Sciences in Moscow.

Kardashev graduated from Moscow State University in 1955, following up at Sternberg Astronomical Institute. He studied under Shklovskii and finished his PhD in 1962.

In 1963 Kardashev examined quasar CTA-102, the first Soviet effort in the search for extraterrestrial intelligence (SETI). In this work he came up with the idea that some galactic civilizations would be perhaps millions or billions of years ahead of us, and created the Kardashev classification scheme to rank such civilizations. Serious Russian efforts in SETI predate similar programs in the US by some years. Other notable experts in the USSR were Vsevolod Troitskii and Iosif Samuilovich Shklovskii (Kardashev's former professor).

Kardashev became a corresponding (associate) member of the USSR Academy of Sciences, Division of General Physics and Astronomy on December 12, 1976. He became a full member of the Russian Academy of Sciences on March 21, 1994.

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