Astronomers have just discovered an extremely rare object.

Credit image: SARAO
Credit image: SARAO

Article by: Andacs Robert Eugen, on 26 March 2022, at 01:03 pm Los Angeles time

Astronomers have discovered such a mysterious object, so rare. It was classified as a strange radio circle.

Strange radio circles (ORCs) are giant radio waves and only 5 have been observed so far, this being the most detailed, a very rare discovery.

The object was named ORC J2103-6200 and was observed in unprecedent details using the MeerKAT High Resolution Radio Telescope from South Africa. Thanks to the high-tech telescope, scientists have had the opportunity to observe fascinating details about this strange circle.

In any case, even if the image looks like a relatively small circle, well, the mysterious object in the picture has a larger outer circle than our galaxy! Astronomers estimate that the outer circle is 1 million light-years in diameter, and inside it are smaller circles, of course of shorter diameter.

"It really reminds me of a Fabergé egg or a soap bubble," says Bärbel Koribalski, a radio astronomer at Australia's Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation in Sydney.

"This discovery will start new scientific research among astronomers," says Alice Pasetto, a radio astronomer at the National Autonomous University of Mexico in Mexico City.

Being so big, it must have something in it, right? Well, it has, and not everything, most ORCs discovered so far, they have a galaxy in their center, they are so big!

Regarding to their formation, there are three theories of the formation of ORCs, which could also be related to the formation of galaxies in their center.

The first theory is that these strange circles can be created by a shock generated right from their galaxy in the center. This means that they formed after the formation of the galaxy and theoretically, they formed around a galaxy.

The second theory is that ORCs are formed due to intense activity of a galactic nucleus, with radio jets, which throw particles and shape the formation of ORCs, resulting in this irregular shape.

And the third theory has to do with their galaxy. Some scientists believe that ORCs are actually shells, caused by stellar explosions that take place in the center of their galaxy.

"The ORC project is a great example of the clever use of MeerKAT by its users, playing to its strengths: ASKAP observes large swathes of the sky and can discover relatively rare types of objects; MeerKAT can then follow up to study them in greater detail," said Fernando Camilo, chief scientist at the South African Radio Astronomy Observatory.

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