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Wed Aug 7, 2019, 08:39 PM

Mysterious, Ancient Radio Signals Keep Pelting Earth. Astronomers Designed an AI to Hunt Them Down.

By Rafi Letzter, Staff Writer | August 7, 2019 12:29pm ET



An animation shows the random appearance of fast radio bursts

(FRBs) across the sky. Astronomers have discovered about 85 since

2007, and pinpointed two of them.
Credit: NRAO Outreach/T. Jarrett (IPAC/Caltech); B. Saxton, NRAO/AUI/NSF

Sudden shrieks of radio waves from deep space keep slamming into radio telescopes on Earth, spattering those instruments' detectors with confusing data. And now, astronomers are using artificial intelligence to pinpoint the source of the shrieks, in the hope of explaining what's sending them to Earth from — researchers suspect — billions of light-years across space.

Usually, these weird, unexplained signals are detected only after the fact, when astronomers notice out-of-place spikes in their data — sometimes years after the incident. The signals have complex, mysterious structures, patterns of peaks and valleys in radio waves that play out in just milliseconds. That's not the sort of signal astronomers expect to come from a simple explosion, or any other one of the standard events known to scatter spikes of electromagnetic energy across space. Astronomers call these strange signals fast radio bursts (FRBs). Ever since the first one was uncovered in 2007, using data recorded in 2001, there's been an ongoing effort to pin down their source. But FRBs arrive at random times and places, and existing human technology and observation methods aren't well-primed to spot these signals.

Now, in a paper published July 4 in the journal Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society, a team of astronomers wrote that they managed to detect five FRBs in real time using a single radio telescope. [The 12 Strangest Objects in the Universe]

Wael Farah, a doctoral student at Swinburne University of Technology in Melbourne, Australia, developed a machine-learning system that recognized the signatures of FRBs as they arrived at the University of Sydney's Molonglo Radio Observatory, near Canberra. As Live Science has previously reported, many scientific instruments, including radio telescopes, produce more data per second than they can reasonably store. So they don't record anything in the finest detail except their most interesting observations.

More:
https://www.livescience.com/66116-fast-radio-bursts-australia-artificial-intelligence.html?utm_source=notification

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Reply Mysterious, Ancient Radio Signals Keep Pelting Earth. Astronomers Designed an AI to Hunt Them Down. (Original post)
Judi Lynn Aug 7 OP
Frustratedlady Aug 7 #1
keithbvadu2 Aug 7 #2
SCantiGOP Aug 7 #4
NRaleighLiberal Aug 7 #3
PoindexterOglethorpe Aug 7 #5

Response to Judi Lynn (Original post)

Wed Aug 7, 2019, 08:45 PM

1. Suppose ET wants to come back? Just sayin'.

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Response to Judi Lynn (Original post)

Wed Aug 7, 2019, 09:11 PM

2. Steven Hawking cautioned about contacting aliens.

Steven Hawking cautioned about contacting aliens.

https://www.google.com/search?client=firefox-b-1-d&q=steven+hawking+cautioned+about+contacting+aliens

They might not be friendly.

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Response to keithbvadu2 (Reply #2)

Wed Aug 7, 2019, 09:31 PM

4. Another race could be so advanced

They would look at humans like we view ants - they can do some amazing things but, come on, they’re just insects. If they’re in the way, wipe them out.

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Response to Judi Lynn (Original post)

Wed Aug 7, 2019, 09:30 PM

3. Horror at trump is universe-wide

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Response to Judi Lynn (Original post)

Wed Aug 7, 2019, 11:15 PM

5. Just talked with My Son The Astronomer about this.

He's not too familiar with this new report, but essentially said that these will almost undoubtedly be some sort of natural astronomical phenomena, kind of like quasars and other things that when we first discovered them were completely mysterious, but are now more or less understood.

The Universe is an amazing place, and we only know a very small amount so far.

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