fast radio burst (FRB)
belk-e râdioyi-ye tond
Fr.: sursaut radio rapide, impulsion ~ ~
A bright → burst of → radio emission lasting only a few milliseconds, and thought to be of → extragalactic origin. The first ever detected such burst, called the → Lorimer burst, was in 2007. It lasted only 5 milliseconds, but the single radio → pulse was dispersed over a wide range of frequencies (→ dispersion measure). This suggested a → cosmic origin for the burst, because the radiation must have passed through very distant → intergalactic clouds to be so highly dispersed. The second FRB was detected in 2012 in archival data from the Parkes Radio Telescope, the same telescope through which the original burst was seen. No temporally coincident → X-ray or → gamma ray signature was identified in association with the bursts. Most recent results suggest FRBs as a new population of explosive events at cosmological distances of up to 3 → giga → parsecs, that is → redshifts of 0.5 to 1. While physical interpretations for this phenomenon remain speculative, they are thought to involve highly → compact objects, such as → neutron stars. See also → blitzar.