Astronomers have made a stunning discovery in space, detecting a radio signal that turns on and off every 18 minutes. Unlike the rapid blinking of most repeating radio signals found in space, this newly discovered signal operates at a much slower pace. Experts believe it could potentially be a magnetar, which is a type of pulsar with powerful and complex magnetic fields.
The signal was first detected using data from 2018, but unfortunately, by the time it was thoroughly analyzed, it was no longer producing radio waves. To investigate further, astronomers utilized the Murchison Widefield Array radio telescope to scan the Milky Way galaxy. Their efforts quickly led them to a new source that repeats every 22 minutes.
To delve deeper into the nature of this phenomenon, multiple telescopes were used to observe the source in different wavelengths of light. Surprisingly, they found that it appeared similar to a pulsar but was spinning a thousand times slower. Even more intriguing was the discovery that pulses from this source had been detected as far back as 1988, indicating that it has been active for over three decades.
One fascinating aspect of this discovery is that the source is emitting pulses in a precise pattern, defying current theories that suggest it should be slowing down. Additionally, this source is located “below the death line,” which is the theoretical limit of how neutron stars produce radio waves.
Initially, scientists believed that the source could be a magnetar. However, the extended duration of the radio emission and the absence of slowing down challenge this hypothesis. Moreover, speculations regarding extraterrestrial intelligence as the origin of these enigmatic signals are highly unlikely, as similar signals have been detected from various parts of the sky.
Unraveling the mystery behind these repeating radio sources will require further observations and in-depth analysis. Astronomers continue to investigate this extraordinary cosmic phenomenon, hoping to gain invaluable insights into the wonders of the universe.
“Travel aficionado. Incurable bacon specialist. Tv evangelist. Wannabe internet enthusiast. Typical creator.”