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Weird radio waves from the heart of the Milky Way

17 Oct 2021, 12:00 UTC
Weird radio waves from the heart of the Milky Way
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An artistic representation of the weird radio waves coming from the heart of the Milky Way. These are unlike any radio signals detected before and are puzzling scientists as to their origin. The source is named ASKAP J173608.2-321635, based on its coordinates on the sky. Image via Sebastian Zentilomo/ The University of Sydney.
Weird radio waves from an unknown source
Radio emission is common in the universe. They’re generated by everything from planets and stars – exotic objects like pulsars and black holes – galaxies – and, of course, human technology. This week (October 12, 2021), astronomers said they’ve detected new and unusual radio wave signals, unlike any found before. The radio waves are coming from the direction of the center of our Milky Way galaxy. And so far, scientists haven’t explained them.
Astronomers discovered the variable signals using the ASKAP radio telescope in Australia. The behavior of the radio emission doesn’t fit the pattern of any known source of radio signals. It might be a new kind of stellar object, the scientists said.
Ziteng Wang in the School of Physics at The University of Sydney led the international team of astronomers from Australia, Germany, the United States, Canada, ...

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