Greetings, fellow earthlings! Australian researchers detected signals from outer space — and it’s not the first time that the Earth received interstellar radio messages! However, don’t worry. It shouldn’t be a cause for alarm either.
What were these signals from outer space?
FRB (or Fast Radio Bursts) were detected by researchers via the FAST telescope. There are many natural causes of FRBs. However, one particular FRB, the FRB 20190520B is said to be quite peculiar. According to Dr. Shi Dai, an astronomer at Western Sydney University, “FRB 20190520B is one of a rare class of FRBs found to repeat,”
Dr. Dai added, “First discovered by the FAST telescope, FRB 20190520B is not only active but more importantly can be detected over a wide radio frequency window, which enables us to use the most advanced radio instruments, such as Parkes and its ultra-wideband receiver, to carry out detailed studies.”
The occurrence of FRBs shouldn’t be a huge cause for concern — unless astronomers can conclude that an FRB poses an imminent threat to the Earth and mankind. To Dr. Dai, “We know that FRBs originate from sources in distant galaxies. This makes FRBs unique tools to probe a range of astrophysics, such as missing matter in between galaxies, the expansion of the Universe, and astrophysics in dense and highly magnetised environments.”
However, scientists are still bewildered by FRB 20190520B. Dr. Dai said, “A total of 113 bursts from FRB 20190520B were detected by the Parkes radio telescope, exceeding the sum of the number of fast radio bursts previously discovered at Parkes, accentuating the value of FRB 20190520B,”
Moreover, Professor Miroslav Filipovic of Western Sydney University noted that “Our interpretation of the finding is connected to changes in the parallel component of the integrated magnetic field along the line-of-sight, including reversals,”
Other FRB signals from outer space detected in the past
There have been a few signals from outer space before. Perhaps the most famous interstellar message is the “Wow! signal” that astronomer Jerry R. Ehman observed; right next to the “6EQUJ5” signal, he wrote “Wow!” However, even Dr. Ehman can’t conclude that something extraterrestrial tried to make contact with Earth — neither can the rest of his peers.
Furthermore, from September 2017 to October 2018, Canadian scientists also detected FRBs from deep space. They found a total of 28 bursts that kept repeating every 16.35 days. But this FRB is unique as it delivered signals with a pattern — whatever caused this would send a signal or two every hour through the span of four days. Afterward, it would go silent for 12 days, and the cycle went on.
Should conspiracy theorists jump to conclusion, or can scientists debunk these signals from outer space?
Since the dawn of civilization, we, humans, have always wondered whether or not there’s life outside the Earth. And if the greatest scientists in the past and present can’t confirm if other cosmic locations are inhabited — and can only hypothesize, for now — neither can we average Joes and Janes. However, the thought of alien existence has always been an interesting possibility to reflect on.
Furthermore, if we’ll stick solely to the topic of FRBs, and not other forms of ET-like phenomena, astrophysicists speculate that FRBs are possibly caused by stars merging, black holes, neutron stars, or other galactic occurrences. Though nobody can stop people from forming their own hypotheses, none of the astrophysicists’ published journals delve into the Hollywood-esque idea of aliens.
This isn’t to say that other unsolved space-related mysteries also disregard the likelihood of extraterrestrial existence. It just so happens that FRB signals from outer space can be prioritized and explored further — as there’s tangible evidence. To some SETI (Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence) researchers, there’s a chance that, somewhere out there in the universe, is a technology that was purposefully made in order to send signals from outer space — to Earth.
Nobody knows for sure if aliens exist. Therefore, there’s a chance that the signals from outer space — that scientists from Australia caught — were caused by another deep-space phenomenon. On the other hand, experts can’t completely dismiss the idea that aliens may be trying to communicate with us either. What’s awesome, however, is we live in a time when we get to hear about news like this.
If you’re interested in the idea of alien existence, you can read more about subjects and topics related to that — please don’t spread conspiracy theories or false information! Even if you think that the government or scientists are “hiding” something, they probably have a good reason for that.
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