A powerful telescope detected hundreds of unexplained radio defects in outer space, leaving scientists looking beyond the galaxy for answers.
More than 500 high-speed radio bursts (FRBs) were observed by scientists using an antenna-powered telescope called CHIME or the Canadian hydrogen intensity mapping experiment over a 12-month period between 2018 and 2019, according to results presented Wednesday to the American Astronomical Society.
FRBs are intense high-energy radio wave pulses that can last only a fraction of a millisecond and are thought to travel to Earth from hundreds of millions of light-years away.
The phenomenon is not fully understood, and FRBs were first discovered in 2007, according to international researchers.
“Before CHIME, there were less than 1
“With all these sources, we can really begin to get a picture of what FRBs look like as a whole, what astrophysics might drive these events, and how they can be used to study the universe in the future.”
The CHIME results indicate that there are as many as 800 unseen FBRs shooting across the sky each day, likely originating from magnetic fields around neutron stars, researchers say.
The FBRs were evenly distributed in space, and at least 61 of the ultra-fast signals were repeated from 18 sources, researchers said.
“The story does not end with the publication of the catalog. I know that scientists around the globe will use this as the starting point for really exciting analyzes, ”said Deborah Good, a PhD researcher at UBC Physics and Astronomy.
Harvard scientist Avi Loeb, who was not involved in the study, speculated last year that foreigners could be behind the FRBs by using them for “military purposes” or to “launch a massive load close to the speed of light.”
“It’s a long shot, but could at least some of these energy fractures from the entire universe come from extraterrestrial civilizations?” Loeb wrote in Scientific American last June.
The results come as defense officials prepare to release a report describing everything the government knows about unidentified air phenomena to Congress this month.
Officials with knowledge of the classified finds told The New York Times that the report shows that the Pentagon is uncertain about the origin of 120 UFO sightings and can neither confirm nor deny that they originated from outer space.