6 Mysterious Radio Signals Have Been Detected Outside of Our Galaxy
Six more mysterious radio signals have been detected outside of our galaxy and guess what? They are all originating from the same region.
Earlier this year, 10 powerful bursts of energy were detected and they were all coming from the same location in space. And researchers got hold of 6 or more of these signals this week. These radio bursts are called the FRBs (Fast Radio Bursts). They are some of the most powerful but short-lived signals as they last only for about a few milliseconds. But here’s the mind-blowing fact about them: in that short span of time, they generate as much energy as the Sun does the entire day here on Earth.
As powerful as these signals may be, scientists are still unsure about what exactly is it that causes them. The reason? These FRBs are so incredibly short-lived that they are hardly ever detected for a thorough investigation.
The FRBs were discovered in 2007 but it was not until this year that we were able to detect them. This detection may be the very starting point for researchers to narrow down the cause of their generation.
The first 10 of these FRBs were detected in March this year, but they actually occurred in May and June of 2015. These were the first FRBs that were noticed outside of our galaxy. In fact, they appeared to be originating in the Milky Way.
Out of these 10 signals, 6 were detected by the Arecibo radio telescope in Puerto Rico. They were also 10 minutes apart from each other. The rest 4 signals were spread out and detected over the next month. Analyzing the data again, researchers also discovered that there was one FRB generated back in 2012. This makes a total of 11 FRBs in actual.
A team of researchers from McGill University, Canada, discovered another mysterious signal coming from the same source and they are calling it the FRB 121102.
"We report on radio and X-ray observations of the only known repeating fast radio burst source, FRB 121102," the team wrote in The Astrophysical Journal.
"We have detected six additional radio bursts from this source: five with the Green Bank Telescope at 2 GHz, and one at 1.4 GHz with the Arecibo Observatory, for a total of 17 bursts from this source."
They may not exactly be sure about the cause of these FRBs, but so far their hypotheses state that the FRBs in Milky Way are caused by the cataclysmic collision between neutron stars forming a black hole.
Although, the repeating nature of these FRBs are suggesting that this is not the case. The cause is less likely to be dramatic, perhaps maybe just one neutron star producing the FRBs. The researchers have settled on the theory that there may be 2 different origins producing more than one type of FRB. Whatever the case, the evidence is still uncertain and further investigations are being carried out to identify the real cause of these radio signals.