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It is the furthest and strongest of all

It is the furthest and strongest of all

Thanks to the ASKAP radio telescope network in Australia, researchers were able to capture the farthest and strongest radio signal ever. In less than a millisecond, the fast radio burst released energy comparable to that released by the Sun in 30 years, and traveled for more than 8 billion years before being detected by Earth. Why is it an anomalous signal and how will it help scientists study the universe?

Credit: CSIRO

Researchers have objected very strong and vague Radio signals Coming from Deep space. the Fast radio blast (FRB) or Fast Radio Flash is not only the farthest ever identified, it has traveled for a long time 8 billion years To be discovered by Earth, but also Most active everSo much so that it exceeds the maximum imposed by mathematical models by an impressive factor of 3.5. This discovery has the potential to rewrite what we know about these encrypted radio signals that last only a few milliseconds, of which only a few dozen have been identified since 2007. When the first one was revealed. But not only. Thanks to them, in fact, researchers were able to find this thing Theme Exists in deep space but hidden from the sensors of our instruments (it’s not). dark), perhaps too hot and widespread to be detected using conventional techniques.

To intercept the strange new Fast Radio Burst – classified as… FRB 20220610A – It was an international research team led by Australian scientists from Macquarie University in Sydney (Australia), who collaborated closely with colleagues from the Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organization – Space and Astronomy, from the Netherlands Institute for Radio Astronomy (ASTRON), Northwestern University and Swinburne University of Technology And other institutions. The researchers, coordinated by Dr. Stuart Ryder, an astronomer at the Australian University’s School of Applied Physics and Mathematics, discovered the radio signal in June 2022 thanks to an advanced network of radio telescopes called the Australian Square Kilometer Array (Pathfinder).ESCAP) is located at Wajarri Yamaji in Western Australia. The fast radio burst lasted less than a millisecond, but in that fraction of time it was capable of releasing the same energy as our sun. It was released over 30 years ago. Some of these signals repeat the time with Swiss precision, others are “one-offs” and for this reason are difficult to study.

The extreme strength of these signals is one of their most interesting features; According to researchers, among the most plausible hypotheses about their origin are MagnetarUnfamiliar Neutron stars With a massive magnetic field billions of times stronger than Earth’s field. Simply put, magnetars can unleash these very powerful stars radio waves When the magnetic field is broken or reconnected. But it is only one of the hypotheses, as there are also hypotheses on the table related to black holes, neutron stars, pulsars and other objects. What is certain is that the signal from FRB 20220610A was so strong that it “destroyed” what the mathematical models developed by astrophysicists had predicted, and moreover, as shown, it was coming from farther away. Dr. Ryder and his colleagues identified the origin as A small group of primitive galaxies About to merge. As shown, it traveled for more than 8 billion years before being picked up by the antennas of the Australian Radio Telescope.

The researchers also noticed another peculiarity: a Spread of wavelengths of the radio signal that did not match what they expected, because they were in conflict with “Macquart report“Which measures the scattering of hidden matter between galaxies. The data shows the passage of the signal Turbulent magnetized plasma, both intergalactic and perhaps those associated with the magnetar’s distant host galaxy (if it originated from one of these objects). Without going into too many technical details, scientists are confident that analyzing the anomalies and peculiarities of these fast radio bursts could be useful in finding the missing matter in “empty” space, the matter that should be there but we cannot see it. Not dark matter, which is more mysterious.) This would help us understand the structure of galaxies and the universe better. As stated by study co-author Ryan Shannon. Search details”A fast, bright radio burst explores the universe at redshift 1“It was published in the scientific journal Science.