Breakthrough Project detects 15 radio bursts Dwarf Galaxy

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Breakthrough Listen project has detected 15 fast radio bursts (FRBs) coming from a dwarf galaxy about 3 million light years away from earth. The new detection was made with help of Green Bank Telescope (GBT) in West Virginia. It was emitted from FRB 121102, a mysterious source associated with galaxy in the distant universe. This detection brings the total of known FRBs from this strange object to more than 150.

The first known radio burst from FRB 121102 was detected on November 2, 2012 (hence the object’s name). Two more bursts were detected in May 2015 and eight more in June 2015. It is being speculated, among other things, that this detected FRB is an energy source used by extra-terrestrial (ET) civilisations to power spacecraft.

Fast radio bursts (FRB)

FRB is brief, bright pulse of radio emission from distant galaxies. It was first detected in 2007 with help of Parkes Telescope in Australia. It is a high-energy astrophysical phenomenon of unknown origin manifested as transient radio pulse lasting only a few milliseconds.

Breakthrough Listen Project (BLP)

BLP is US$100-million global astronomical initiative launched in 2015 by Internet investor Yuri Milner and cosmologist Stephen Hawking. It has teams from around the world to find signs of intelligent life in the universe.  The 10-year program aims to survey 1,000,000 closest stars to Earth by scanning entire galactic plane of Milky Way. It will listen for messages from the 100 closest galaxies at 10 billion different frequencies originated beyond our galaxy.

Breakthrough Listen is a program to search for intelligent extraterrestrial communications in the Universe. With $100 million in funding and thousands of hours of dedicated telescope time on state-of-the-art facilities, it is the most comprehensive search for alien communications to date. The project began in January 2016 and is expected to continue for 10 years. It is a component of Yuri Milner’s Breakthrough Initiatives program.

The project uses radio wave observations from the Green Bank Observatory and the Parkes Observatory, and visible light observations from the Automated Planet Finder. Targets for the project include one million nearby stars and the centers of 100 galaxies. All data generated from the project are available to the public, and SETI@Home is used for some of the data analysis. The first results were published in April 2017, with further updates expected every 6 months