Somewhere there, in the depths of our Universe, mysterious energy eruptions occur, which are known as fast radio bursts.
These strange phenomena were first discovered almost ten years ago, but astronomers are still at a loss as to what caused them. Everything from exotic sources to extraterrestrial intelligence was named as possible perpetrators. Now, by painstakingly analyzing the signal from one of these pulses, astronomers can step on the trail and finally figure out what the hell is rumbling in space.
Despite the fact that BRVs last only a fraction of a second, they contain a monstrous energy strike. Since they are so short, they are not easy to write. They blink and pass. In addition, they cross huge distances, so their signals stretch and blur. According to a press release from Carnegie Mellon University, although they were recorded only a few times, astronomers believe that the Universe sees tens of thousands of these impulses every day, but to see them you need to be in the right place at the right time.
After analyzing hundreds of hours of data from the National Science Foundation (NSF) Green Bank (GBT) in West Virginia, the researchers stumbled upon the most detailed entry of the RVD recorded to date. Thanks to this signal, scientists are able to get magnetic “fingerprints” to find out the environment in which it was generated. “We now know that the energy of this BDV passed through a dense magnetized area shortly after it originated,” said astronomer Kiyoshi Mazui of the University of British Columbia and the Canadian Institute of Advanced Studies. "This significantly narrows the environment and the type of event that caused the explosion."
To date, only 15 fast radio bursts have been finally determined, and all of them were in the 1, 2-1, 5 GHz frequency range. The RDB 110523 has a lower frequency in the range of 700-900 MHz.
“I feel that we are very fortunate that we have identified 16 VIRs,” said Yu-Xian Lin, also from Carnegie Mellon, who did the VIR 110523 identification. the amount of information that will help us better understand this astrophysical phenomenon. "
This signal is like a diamond in a pile of stones. It is not only very clear, but also retains information about the electromagnetic radiation in which it originated.
"It tells us something about the magnetic field through which the explosion passed," said Masui.
Measurements of the variance of the delay of the RRP 110523 showed that the source is at a distance of 6 billion light years from us (half of the history of the Universe). Additional analysis also showed that the source is in another galaxy. But that is not all. An analysis of the pulse delay spread showed that the signal passed through two different regions of ionized gas. One of these regions was very close to the source (within the source galaxy), and most likely was a nebula around the source or the environment around the center of the galaxy.
"This data provides the most detailed data on BDT and shed light on these mysterious events," said Masui.
This discovery reminds us of the history of the discovery of a pulsar in 1967. At that time, astronomers discovered a periodic, mysterious signal coming from the pulsar PSR B1919 + 21. The signal was quickly identified, and the source of the signal was a rapidly rotating neutron star, which generated powerful radio emissions.
Although the source of BRV is still not clear, their secret is slowly revealed, and the key may be the processes occurring in the hearts of galaxies that are billions of light years from us.