Researchers have recently picked up six radio waves from the constellation Auriga, which sits three billion light years away from Earth; and many think they could be alien life attempting to contact us.
These new radio bursts make 17 that scientists have detected thus far from the same location, making some wonder if, indeed, another life form is trying to signal to Earth.
Scientists say that the fact that the bursts continue to happen in the same location mean that it is almost impossible that they are from a one time event, like an explosion or collision deep in space.
Canadian scientists from McGill University in Montreal have discovered these bursts, from a location called FRB 121102.
In a paper for The Astrophysical Journal, in which they discussed the new radio wave bursts, they wrote:
We have detected six additional radio bursts from this source: five with the Green Bank Telescope at 2 GHz, and one at 1.4 GHz with the Arecibo Observatory, for a total of 17 bursts from this source.
These bursts only last for a few milliseconds, but they contain the same amount of energy as the Sun produces in one day.
Although many scientists and researchers are hypothesizing that alien life forms are behind these bursts, some scientists theorize that they are flares from a neutron star–the core left behind after a star explodes.
The first of such radio bursts was detected back in 2007, meaning it has taken nearly 10 years to acknowledge all 17 of them.
And because of the fact that 17 of them have been picked up, scientists have settled the argument that it was originally a problem with their equipment.
However it took scientists several years, and several more radio bursts, to reach a consensus that it wasn’t just a glitch.
In the academic paper, researchers from McGill write:
In summary, FRB 121102 shares many of the same observational properties with FRBs believed to be extragalactic, and the occurrence rate is consistent with previous discoveries.
Still, their origin remains a mystery and leaves scientists to pontificate and speculate on where they come from.
It is expected they will continue to work on this mystery for many years to come.
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