Back in 2007, astronomers detected an incredibly brief, incredibly strong radio wave burst in Australia. And now, on the opposite side of the world, astronomers have detected a second blast of similar proportions. Meaning that A) the first one wasn't a fluke, and B) we have absolutely no idea what's causing them. This second ultrafast flash of radio waves was discovered by the Arecibo radio telescope in Puerto Rico, which had been putting out its feelers in hopes of discovering neutron stars. Instead, it got the second instance of so-called fast radio bursts (FRBs), which finally allowed astronomers to rule out cosmic noise and formally report them. Because unlike the radio signals we usually detect, these radio waves "show every sign of having come from far outside our galaxy." According to Laura Spitler, a post-doctoral researcher for the Max Planck Institute for Radio Astronomy in Germany, the discovery is a major step forward: More via Gizmodo.
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