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An international team of scientists led by a prominent Harvard astronomer announced a new initiative Monday to look for evidence of technology built by extraterrestrial civilizations.

Called the Galileo Project, it envisages the creation of a global network of medium-sized telescopes, cameras and computers to investigate unidentified flying objects, and has so far been funded with $1.75 million from private donors.

Given recent research showing the prevalence of Earth-like planets throughout the galaxy, "We can no longer ignore the possibility that technological civilizations predated us," Professor Avi Loeb told reporters at a news conference.

"The impact of any discovery of extraterrestrial technology on science, our technology, and on our entire world view, would be enormous," he added in a statement.

The project includes researchers from Harvard, Princeton, Cambridge, Caltech and the University of Stockholm.

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