A new business-like approach to astronomy is expected to yield results in the search of intelligent life in the universe beyond the planet Earth.Breakthrough Initiatives is being funded by US-based billionaire and Silicon Valley technology investor and physicist Yuri Milner, who wants to put the entire weight of modern day technology behind this $100-million mission.With the data collated open to the entire world, Indian scientists can be as much a part of this historic search, which plans to cover 10 times more of the sky than previous programmes and scan five times more of the radio spectrum, 100 times faster.The programme kicks off with ′Breakthrough Listen′ to track signals with access to two of the world's most powerful telescopes - Green Bank Telescope in West Virginia, US, and Parkes Telescope in New South Wales, Australia.The program will include a survey of the 1,000,000 closest stars to Earth and beyond the Milky Way, it will listen for messages from the 100 closest galaxies.Milner explained: “With ′Breakthrough Listen′, we're committed to bringing the Silicon Valley approach to the search for intelligent life in the Universe. Our approach to data will be open and taking advantage of the problem-solving power of social networks.”World renowned British physicist and cosmologist Stephen Hawking launched the new programme, characterised as the “biggest scientific search ever undertaken for signs of intelligent life beyond Earth”.“We believe life arose spontaneously on earth. So in an infinite universe there must be other occurences of life. Somewhere in the cosmos perhaps intelligent life may be watching these lives of ours, aware of what they mean,” Prof. Hawking said, speaking through his electronic speech translator.“Or do our lights wander a lifeless cosmos - unseen beacons, announcing that here, on one rock, the Universe discovered its existence. Either way, there is no bigger question. It is time to commit to finding the answer to search for life beyond Earth. We are alive, we are intelligent, we must know,” the author of 'A Brief History of Time' noted.Lord MartinRees, Emeritus Professor of Cosmology and Astrophysics and University of Cambridge and member of the advisory committee of the initiative, added: “This is a huge gamble but the payoff will be colossal. With technological advances of today, the chance of finding life in the universe has increased a billion-fold.”The global public will be invited to participate in efforts to find a signal from another world through the Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence or SETI@home project.A linked ′Breakthrough Message′ programme will fund an international competition to generate messages representing humanity and planet Earth, which might one day be sent to other civilisations.“The competition is designed to spark the imaginations of millions, and to generate conversation about who we really are in the universe and what it is that we wish to share about the nature of being alive on Earth. Even if we don't send a single message, the act of conceptualising one can be transformative,” said Ann Druyan, creative director of the Interstellar Message, NASA Voyager and co-Founder and CEO of Cosmos Studios.The pool of the worldwide prize will total $1,000,000 and its details will be unveiled in the coming months.