About the journal


DEVELOPMENTS), ISSN: 2079-5165, eISSN: 2410-7948, DOI: 10.21455/std;; The journal was founded in 1992.


M.V. Rodkin

Institute of Earthquake Prediction Theory and Mathematical Geophysics, Russian Academy of Sciences,
Moscow, Russia

Institute of Marine Geology and Geophysics, Far Eastern Branch of the Russian Academy of Sciences,
Yuzhno-Sakhalinsk, Russia



– The policy and rhetoric of political leaders lowers the barrier of the fundamental in applicability of nuclear weapons

– Сrises and the death of ancient civilizations

– Fermi’s paradox indicates the shortness of the existence of technological civilizations

– The shortness of existence hardly can be caused by natural disasters or global ecological crisis

– Self-destruction of the mankind is possible from the origin of the effect of the nuclear winter

– Estimate of the current probability of accidental war is about 98 % per century

Abstract. The growth of international tension raises both the likelihood of an accidental nuclear war as a result of a technical error and mutual fear of the adversaries to miss the first disarming strike, and its emergence as a result of the escalation of the conventional conflict. Recently, the perceived barrier to the fundamental inapplicability of nuclear weapons, albeit only tactical and low-power, has been significantly reduced. Hence the danger of the Great War increases in the course of the escalation of the next conflict. The Fermi paradox and the negative result (at the present time) of programs for the search for extraterrestrial civilizations (SETI) are interpreted as an indication of the shortness of the average lifetime of technological civilizations (no more than several thousand years, rather much less, a couple of centuries). At the same time, natural disasters that could lead to the death of civilizations have a much longer period of recurrence. The likelihood of the death of human civilization as a result of the development of the global environmental crisis in the next few centuries also appears to be small. Such a crisis, it seems, is now receding into the background. The death of the ecosystem of the planet is possible as a result of a large-scale nuclear war and the nuclear winter (nuclear night) caused by it. Such a war can arise in a random way – against the backdrop of a high level of international tension. At least four cases are known, when such a war nearly erupted in the past, and the order for the use of nuclear weapons was twice given. The list of such cases is obviously not complete for reasons of secrecy. It is interesting in this connection, and the observation that if the “impossible” catastrophes on civilian objects (Chernobyl, Sayano-Shushenskaya HPP, “Bulgaria”, and other such cases) were caused, as a rule, by violations of operating instructions, then several nuclear war just because the officers deliberately violated the instructions, preferring a sense of personal responsibility and common sense.

Keywords: geopolitics, the Fermi paradox, the SETI problem, crises and mega-catastrophes in the history of mankind, scenarios of emergence of the nuclear war, the probability of self destruction of mankind.

Cite this article as: Rodkin M.V. The Fermi paradox in the light of the current geopolitical situation, Nauka i Tekhnologicheskie Razrabotki (Science and Technological Developments), 2018, vol. 97, no. 3, pp. 33–48. [in Russian.]. DOI: 10.21455/std2018.3-4


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About the author

RODKIN Mikhail Vladimirovich – Doctor of physical and mathematical sciences, chief researcher, Institute of Earthquake Prediction Theory and Mathematical Geophysics of the Russian Academy of Sciences. Russia, 117997, Moscow, ul. Profsoyuznaya, 84/32: Institute of Marine Geology and Geophysics, Far East Division, Russian Academy of Sciences. Russia, 693022, Yuzhno-Sakhalinsk, ul. Nauki, 1B. E-mail: