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Star-Lord

**Astronomers**

Recommended Posts

Star-Lord

 

A "most bizarre" strobe light star reported by European astronomers likely belongs to a long-sought family of compact "neutron" stars.

 

It initially showed up as a gamma-ray burst, leading astronomers to think it was the death of a star in the far-off universe. But after that first gamma-ray pulse, there was a three-day period of activity during which this odd celestial object emitted 40 visible-light flashes before disappearing again. Eleven days later, there was a brief near-infrared flaring episode recorded by ESO's Very Large Telescope. Then the weird object went visibly "silent" again.

Astronomers spot a 'bizarre' strobe light star

 

 

"We are dealing with an object that has been hibernating for decades before entering a brief period of activity," said Alberto J. Castro-Tirado, lead author of a paper in this week's issue of Nature.

 

Astronomers now think this celestial enigma is a 'magnetar' located in our own Milky Way galaxy, about 15,000 light-years away in the area around the constellation of Vulpecula, the Fox. Magnetars are a type of young neutron stars. They boast a magnetic field that's a billion billion times stronger than Earth's.

 

To put that in perspective for those of us with the financial crisis willies: “A magnetar would wipe the information from all credit cards on Earth from a distance halfway to the Moon,” explains Antonio de Ugarte Postigo, the study's co-author.

 

Because magnetars can be celestially silent for decades at a time, they're hard to pin unless we're looking at the right place at the right time. Postigo says there's likely a large population of them in the Milky Way even though we've only identified about 12.

 

The magnetar, known as SWIFT J195509+261406, is a candidate for what scientists have been looking for: A magnetar moving towards a pleasant retirement as its magnetic fields decay.

 

By Dan Vergano and Jess Zielinski

Photo: The twisting of magnetic field lines in magnetars give rise to 'starquakes', which will eventually lead to an intense soft gamma-ray burst. In the case of the SWIFT source, the optical flares that reached the Earth were probably due to ions ripped out from the surface of the magnetar and gyrating around the field lines.

 

SOURCE:

 

http://blogs.usatoday.com/sciencefair/2008/09/astronomers-spo.html

 

 

So want do you guys think? Please! Post your comments...

Edited by pcguytech_2005

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Democrab

I saw something standing still in the sky but blinking white like an air plane the other night, this kinda reminds me of it, but I doubt that it had anything to do with it.

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the all seeing eye

so, why is this important?

is this life threatening?

will it kill us all?

whats the point?

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Torcidas
so, why is this important?

is this life threatening?

will it kill us all?

whats the point?

The point is you shouldn't be opening topics that you evidently have no interest in whatsoever. Speaking of the star, it looks pretty.. "bizarre".

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the all seeing eye
so, why is this important?

is this life threatening?

will it kill us all?

whats the point?

The point is you shouldn't be opening topics that you evidently have no interest in whatsoever. Speaking of the star, it looks pretty.. "bizarre".

it's not that im not interested,

 

otherwise i wouldnt be asking questions. i would have just clicked the return button and got on with my life

 

tounge.gif

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Star-Lord
I saw something standing still in the sky but blinking white like an air plane the other night, this kinda reminds me of it, but I doubt that it had anything to do with it.

It could of been but I'm not sure if we would be able to see something that far with the naked eye.

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Rhoda

This sounds interesting as it changes our perception of space (or at least, their perception). More questions than answers are raised though, I'll keep my eye on developments.

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Stefan.

Yeah, I saw a flashing light the other night, it turned out to be an aeroplane. turn.gif

 

This development is pretty interesting. I'm sure that some astronomers will now use to improve their understanding of stars and their impact on Earth. I'm glad that that is now one less thing that will destroy the Earth.

 

 

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Guybrush Threepwood

Man, the only time I ever see strobing lights through my telescope is when the cops are rolling up when I'm spying on the hot neighbor.

She sure isn't some undiscovered star sad.gif

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TheRoper
Yeah, I saw a flashing light the other night, it turned out to be an aeroplane. turn.gif

AHAHAHAHAHA! sarcasm.gif

 

 

 

This topic was anti-climatic. I love astronomy and all, but I was hoping for something more interesting. It was only 'bizarre' for the first 5 minutes before they figured out what it was.

 

Still, pretty cool that they caught it in the act; slim odds when we're speaking in Universal terms.

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SaintJimmy
so, why is this important?

is this life threatening?

will it kill us all?

whats the point?

The point is you shouldn't be opening topics that you evidently have no interest in whatsoever. Speaking of the star, it looks pretty.. "bizarre".

it's not that im not interested,

 

otherwise i wouldnt be asking questions. i would have just clicked the return button and got on with my life

 

tounge.gif

Life? What life?

Ontopic: Pfft, the sun is full of sh*t. They photoshopped images of GTA3 and SA together in one of their recent articles on GTA.

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Democrab
Yeah, I saw a flashing light the other night, it turned out to be an aeroplane. turn.gif

I hope your being sarcastic.

 

I first thought it was a plane or Satellite when I saw it, but as I said it wasn't moving and I doubt there are many planes that just stop moving for half an hour in the middle of a flight.

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DJBillyB

i love astronamy, always been interested in it. never come across something like that before

i read a story in the metro newspaper this morning about a new telescope being built in chillie. ots hoping to look far into the universe possibly to the point of near the begining of the universe...

 

http://www.eso.org/sci/facilities/alma/

 

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