Wednesday, 15 August, 2018

New Radio Telescope Picks up Strange Signal From Space

Scientists cannot explain the origins of a super-powerful ‘fast radio burst’ detected by a new telescope Scientists cannot explain the origins of a super-powerful ‘fast radio burst’ detected by a new telescope
Kristen Harrington | 06 August, 2018, 10:13

The radio telescope set up in Canada a year ago was able to detect a mysterious radio signal emanating from deep space at frequencies below 700 MHZ on July 25, keeping scientists busy to decipher the source of it.

On July 25, CHIME recorded a weird signal codenamed FRB 180725A at 17:59:43 UTC emitted at 580 MHz - a lower frequency than most FRBs.

As a result, scientists believe that the source (whatever it is - PRESUMABLY ALIENS, THOUGH) is likely to be extremely powerful. According to the sources, this is the lowest frequency FRB in history - picked up by CHIME at a frequency below 700 MHz.

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The latest FRB, which was detected by researchers at the Canadian Hydrogen Intensity Mapping Experiment in British Columbia, was allegedly the first to be heard between the much deeper frequency range of 400 to 800 MHz, rendering it a much lower signal than numerous FRB episodes before it.

Patrick Boyle, of McGill University, first reported the detection of the FRB with a post on the astronomical publication Astronomer's Telegram.

But FRB 180725A had a few more surprises in store.

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"Additional FRBs have been found since FRB 180725A and some have flux at frequencies as low as 400 MHz". Boyle adds that odd event did not correlate with any known activities or other known sources.

Most of the time such kind of radio telescopes don't hear anything that's abnormal, but now an unexplained signal made its way through the noise. FRBs are milliseconds-long bursts of radio emissions. Not much is known about these short, high-energy signals, except that they have been attributed to a number of different potential sources, one more exotic than the other. Beyond the visible spectrum, space is a colorful mess of radio signals and microwaves fired off by flaring "suns", collapsing stars, crackling magnetic fields, roiling dust clouds and seething black holes.

In any case - whether the merger of black holes, exploding stars or just noisy alien party - we will need a remarkable patience, while science can give a precise answer about where are these fast radio bursts. FRBs may even reach our planet thousands of times a day, Conselice said; we just haven't built enough tools to detect them all yet.

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Scientists also believe that whatever produced the signal tends to be an extremely powerful extraterrestrial being.

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