Canada’s New Radio Telescope Picks Up Mysterious Signal From Space

Posted: Aug 5 2018, 11:59pm CDT | by , in News | Latest Science News

 
Canada’s New Radio Telescope Picks Up Mysterious Signal from Space
Credit: University of British Columbia

The event marks the first detection of fast radio burst at frequencies below 700MHz.

Researchers at CHIME radio telescope have reported recording a mysterious radio signal on July 25. The signal was detected at frequencies as low as 580 MHz, making it the first known fast radio burst below 700 MHz.

Fast radio bursts or FRBs are bright flashes of light that originate from unknown parts of space and last only a few milliseconds. The first radio burst was detected in 2001. Since that time, more than 30 FRBs have been recorded but researchers still don’t know what causes these mysterious and powerful flashes of radio light.

While the exact nature of FRBs is still poorly understood, researchers suggest that these flashes come from powerful enigmatic sources like rapidly spinning neutron stars with extraordinarily strong magnetic fields. These extreme objects are likely located well beyond Milky Way.

Researchers found the recent FRB, dubbed FRB 180725A by using new highly sensitive radio telescope, the Canadian Hydrogen Intensity Mapping Experiment (CHIME).

CHIME is designed to make critical observations and to answer decades-old questions about astrophysics. It is also a powerful tool for detecting FRBs. Most of the radio signals received by CHIME come from our Milky Way galaxy. But it can also detect a radio signal from deep space which is usually very weak and requires an extreme level of sensitivity.

“The event is clearly detected at frequencies as low as 580 MHz and represents the first detection of an FRB at radio frequencies below 700 MHz.” Authors wrote in the study.

“Additional FRBs have been found since FRB 180725A and some have flux at frequencies as low as 400 MHz. These events have occurred during both the day and night and their arrival times are not correlated with known on-site activities or other known sources of terrestrial RFI."

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<a href="/latest_stories/all/all/47" rel="author">Hira Bashir</a>
The latest discoveries in science are the passion of Hira Bashir. With years of experience, she is able to spot the most interesting new achievements of scientists around the world and cover them in easy to understand reporting.

 

 

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