Enlarge / The CHIME telescope has confirmed adept at choosing up quick radio bursts. (credit score: Andre Renard / CHIME Collaboration)
Right now, researchers are saying they’ve solved one of many questions that has been nagging them over the previous decade: what precisely produces the bizarre phenomena often known as quick radio bursts (FRBs)? As their title implies, FRBs contain a sudden blast of radio-frequency radiation that lasts only a few microseconds. We did not even know that FRBs existed till 2007 however have since cataloged lots of of them; some come from sources that repeatedly emit them, whereas others appear to burst as soon as and go silent.
Clearly, you’ll be able to produce this kind of sudden surge of power by destroying one thing. However the existence of repeating sources means that a minimum of a few of them are produced by an object that survives the occasion. That has led to a concentrate on compact objects, like neutron stars and black holes, with a category of neutron stars known as magnetars being considered very suspiciously.
These suspicions have now been borne out, as astronomers have watched a magnetar in our personal galaxy sending out an FRB on the similar time it emitted pulses of high-energy gamma rays. This does not reply all our questions, as we’re nonetheless unsure how the FRBs are produced or why solely a number of the gamma-ray outbursts from this magnetar are related to FRBs. However the affirmation will give us an opportunity to look extra fastidiously on the excessive physics of magnetars as we attempt to perceive what is going on on.Learn 15 remaining paragraphs | Feedback
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