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Fast Radio Bursts Are a Sci-Fi Dream with An Astrophysical Source

Fast Radio Bursts Are a Sci-Fi Dream with An Astrophysical Source

An international team of astrophysicists has traced the origin of the only known repeating fast radio burst, according to a study published this week in Nature.

Fast radio bursts (FRBs) are not uncommon.

The radio waves of FRB 121102 have been twisted, we think, because they passed through a strong magnetic field—possibly a ripping torrent of high-speed, highly-magnetized plasma.

"We found something that is clearly in an extreme place and the extreme location may create a phenomenon that is one of the biggest astrophysical mysteries of recent times," offered study co-author Victoria Kaspi, a professor at McGill University and leading voice on pulsars and neutron stars, in a statement.

In any case, when the Canadian CHIME Telescope (above) goes online later this year we'll have a way to look even deeper at FRB 121102's ultimate origin.

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