Sunday, 16 June, 2019

Second Mysterious Fast Radio Burst Detected From Outer Space

Credit PA Credit PA
Kristen Harrington | 14 January, 2019, 05:01

Dr Ryan Shannon from Swinburne University of Technology said 20 fast radio bursts were detected in a year, "almost doubling the number detected worldwide since they were discovered in 2007".

A lot of them only burst once, never to be heard from again. "We don't know the precise distance to the second one yet". We can't track the vast majority.

Astronomers have recorded repetitive radio signals from deep space.

"Fast Radio Burst", the detection of these low frequency signals provide a new clue to the astrophysical puzzle. And when there are increased sources and more repeaters for the goal of conducting a study, the cosmic puzzles would become easier for them to have better understanding and it would then be clear that what the actual source of those blasts was.

They were picked up by researchers using the CHIME (Canadian Hydrogen Intensity Mapping Experiment) telescope in British Columbia. Further bursts were detected in the following weeks.

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Including the repeater, CHIME picked up a total of 13 new FRBs over the course of two months.

CHIME team member Prof Stairs said: "Until now, there was only one known repeating FRB".

Researchers recorded 13 bursts in a three-week period.

The new signals are likely to force scientists to reconsider current FRB models.

But that's more or less the limit of our knowledge of FRB 121102. There is also a type of intergalactic light - known as fast radio bursts (FRBs) - that have consistently boggled scientists and their instruments. These ultrastrong, ultrabright radio signals last only a few milliseconds and are thought to originate from billions of light-years away, though their precise source is unknown.

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"This is good news for radio telescopes that are sensitive at lower radio frequencies", she said.

While most FRBs have been spotted at wavelengths of a few centimetres, the latest FRBs were detected at wavelengths of almost a metre, which opens up new lines of inquiry, according to the CHIME team. CHIME can only record signals between 400 MHz and 800 MHz.

Since getting past the pre-commissioning phase, CHIME has detected emissions in multiple events - seen down to 400 MHz, the lowest radio frequency to which it is sensitive.

Another theory is that astrophysical phenomenon might be triggering the bursts.

In this case, the scattering indicates that the bursts originated in an environment with special characteristics.

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"That could mean in some sort of dense clump like a supernova remnant", team member and University of Toronto astronomer Cherry Ng said in a statement. Some have proposed explanations, such as energy being flung as black holes tear stars apart, or perhaps even distant alien civilizations sending out long-range signals in the hopes of finding intelligent life. "But it has to be in some special place tog I've us all the scattering that we see".

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