Powerful transient radio flashes in the universe fire randomly and apparently do not give an explanation, but astronomers managed to make a breakthrough on this issue and identify the exact source of one of these Fast Radio Bursts, known simply as “DTV” (“FRB” ).
Only a few BRVs have ever been identified and recorded in an archive of data received through a radio telescope. They can be extremely short-lived, but they are so strong that even in these mildest moments such a huge amount of energy is generated that it will take our Sun 10,000 years to deflate it.
The dazzling power of these phenomena admires, as well as their random nature (it seems that they were generated far beyond our galaxy and appear at any point in the sky) and a very short (millisecond) explosion makes subsequent observations in most cases impossible. However, on Wednesday, astronomers, using radio telescopes of the Organization of the Commonwealth of Scientific and Industrial Research - CSNRO in Eastern Australia and the Japanese Subaru telescope at the National Astronomical Observatory in Hawaii, announced a breakthrough.
Usually, RVS are seen several months or even years after they were detected with radio telescopes. Analyzing radio archives, signals are only teased at a distance. Unfortunately, this method leaves no space for subsequent observations of the sky where the signal occurs. Because of this, their origin remains secret. To fix this, the international team created an early warning system, so that as soon as a signal is received, other observatories will receive a warning and will have time to increase the scale of the area in the sky where the DFV is detected. “This system resembles something between the NASA Swift Space Telescope, which detects gamma-ray bursts or GRB, and ground-based observatories, whose subsequent observations may consider an energy explosion at close range.
For example, on April 18, 2015, the Australian 64-meter Parks radio telescope detected a flash outbreak and immediately notified the cooperation. Within two hours, the compact unit of the CSIRO telescope, located 400 km (250 miles) north of Parks, turned in the direction where the impulse was noticed and was able to detect radio emission from the site of the explosion, which lasted 6 days before it burned out. Already, astronomers have done something unprecedented: they have determined the location of the RTV and measured its radio reflection.
At the same time, at the top of Mauna Kea in Hawaii, the Subaru telescope was able to start its race from observations, determining the exact source of the DFV and radio reflections. Since the location of the DTV on April 18 was known to be 1000 times better than those that were found earlier, Subaru made a groundbreaking discovery, determining that this DTV appeared inside a galaxy 6 billion years away from Earth.
Particularly interesting is that after further observations of this random galaxy, the researcher discovered that this is an old elliptical galaxy - a type of galaxy, which is not so often found on the path of star formation. This is the first sign that BRV is probably not generated by star formation processes.
“This is not what we expected,” said Simon Johnson, head of astrophysics at CSIRO and a member of the research team. “This may mean that the DFV appeared as a result of, say, a collision of two neutron stars. And this is an event that has nothing to do with newly born stars. ” Moreover, this observation was used as a tool to determine how much radio wave BWV traveled through space and how many eventually reached Earth after 6 billion years. And this one event seems to correspond exactly to our theoretical models about the distribution of matter, including dark matter, in the Universe.
“The good news is that thanks to our observations and models, we found the missing link,” said Evan Keane of the SKA organization and lead author of a study published in the journal Nature. “This is the first time that a fast radio burst has been used to conduct a cosmological measurement.”
I would like to hope that now the system will be able to make quick and accurate observations of the RVS, and it can also be used to further refine cosmological models.
As for this particular RTS, we at least know where it came from, and what galaxy reproduced it. But even better is that now our astronomers know that every day in the sky sparkles 10,000 RMS. And we just need more radio telescopes to fix them.