An international team of astronomers has discovered unusual signals (radio waves) coming from the direction of our galaxy center.
These radio waves do not match any known radio source, which is probably why come from a hitherto unknown object in space. No scientist, at present, there is no clear answer as to their origin.
Researchers from various countries (Australia, USA, Canada, Spain, France, South Africa) who conducted the relevant publication in the Astrophysical Journal, reported that “the strangest property of the new signal is that it has a very high polarization, which means that its light oscillates only in one direction, but this direction rotates over time.”
They also pointed out that the brightness of the object fluctuates dramatically, by 100 times, and the signal seems to “flash” randomly. “We have never seen anything like it,” said researcher Zitteng Wang of the Institute of Astronomy and the School of Physics at the University of Sydney.
“Looking at the center of our galaxy, we found this object that is unique, as at first, it was invisible, then it became bright, then it faded and then it reappeared. “The behavior was completely unusual,” said Tara Murphy, also a professor at the University of Sydney.
Many types of stars emit variable light in the electromagnetic spectrum. Neutron stars (pulsars), supernovae (supernovae), stars that send flashes in space, and fast radio waves (FRBs) are such astronomical objects whose brightness fluctuates.
But the new source, originally discovered by the Australian radio telescope ASKAP and confirmed by the South African radio telescope MeerKAT, does not appear to match any of these phenomena. Having detected six radio signals with ASKAP over nine months in 2020, astronomers then tried to observe it with an optical telescope but failed. The attempt of the Parkes radio telescope was just as unsuccessful, but finally, the most sensitive MeerKAT rediscovered this year the mysterious object, which was christened “the object of ‘Anti’ (from the nickname of the astronomer who first discovered it).
As Murphy said, “We were lucky that the signal returned, but we found that his behavior was dramatically different. The source disappeared in just one day, although it had lasted for weeks when we had observed it with the ASKAP radio telescope “.
The new unknown source, which is probably small in size and has a strong magnetic field, is being added to other mysterious radio objects that have been discovered relatively recently near the galactic center and also have varying brightness (hence the name “Galactic Center Radio Transients”. ”). Within the next decade, the large interconnected intercontinental radio telescope SKA (Square Kilometer Array) will be put into operation, which hopes to shed more light on these mysterious objects.
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