Space is big, my brain just ain't
" it put out energy equivalent to the Sun's daily output in a few milliseconds" I can't even begin to pretend to grasp this sort of number. Perhaps if it were stated in El Reg standard units?
The Australian Parkes radiotelescope – even though under threat from budget cuts – has produced its first chunk of science for 2015, and it's a substantial one indeed. The mighty Antipodean instrument has given astronomers their only real-time view so far of the unexplained phenomenon known as the Fast Radio Burst (FRB). FRBs …
That's a tough one because El Reg doesn't have a standard unit for energy, but it does have a unit for mass. The font of all (dis)information Wikipedia says the energy output of the sun is 9.192×1010 megatons of TNT per second, which is 7941888000000000 megatons of TNT per day, which is 7941888000000000000000 tons of TNT per day, which is... drumroll please...
the energy of 1.89e+24 Jubs of TNT exploding, in just a few milliseconds!
I think we can all agree that is more Jubs than anyone can safely handle in one go (no matter how much you might want to).
That's a tough one because El Reg doesn't have a standard unit for energy,
It clearly needs one.
1 Joule is 1 Nm, which in Reg units would be 0.0174 Norris linguini (Nolg) (although I have a hard time imagining Chuck with a plate of pasta).
Thinking of some useful Reg-related activity which requires energy, we can see that a pint of beer weighs around 568g (assuming it's mostly water) and a check with the one-off sample of a beer glass I have to hand suggests around 400g for the glass, so lets take a round 1kg for a full pint glass.
Lifting it approx 50cm from table to mouth would require approx 5 joules of energy, so I propose to name that one Quaff. This gives us:
1 Qu = 5J = 0.087 Nolg
Getting back to the original question, the Wikipedia article quotes the Sun as pumping out 384.6 yotta watts (3.846 e+26 W), which is 3.32 e+31 Joules per day, some 6.64 e+30 Quaffs, or 6,640,000 yottaQuaffs.
Now I should get back to work...
"Lifting it approx 50cm from table to mouth would require approx 5 joules of energy, so I propose to name that one Quaff."
That's all well and good, it almost sounds like a proper exercise regime, but what's the ratio of calorific intake of 1 Quaff to the energy expended and can we make it negative while still using a decent beer?
Let me try to put this another (perhaps more familiar) way - apparently the Sun's daily output of energy is the e-equals-mc-square equivalent of the mass of about FIVE MILLION QE aircraft carriers every day (albeit that's without any double decker buses on deck). Now who's glad we don't have to foot THAT bill...?
That's a tough one because El Reg doesn't have a standard unit for energy, but it does have a unit for mass.
So doesn't that mean it can have a standard unit for energy, derived from its unit for mass? All you have to do is use the most famous equation in the world.
If they decode them, I bet they get:
"Come on down to Crazy Xorthax's Used Flying Saucer Emporium!! We keep a huge selection of pre-owned space cruisers and astro shuttles, all of them quality-certified by our on-site maintenance shop! And our prices?! Why, they're so low my competition thinks I was born without a second brain! And if you still need financing?--just ask for Honest Kithek in our credit department!! Why, we're practically givin' em away down here! Our secret?--small galaxy overhead with big galaxy volume!
So, if you need a new UFO now you know the place to go! Crazy Xorthax's, right off exit 3283174 in the Andromeda galaxy! Y'all come down now, ya' hear!!
Given that the burst seems to peak in the 1200-1300 MHz band, I would suspect that it come from some anomalous propagation. The source could either be military radar or ham radio, as both occupy that band. A particularly robust meteor trail could provide the necessary source.
Find a pair of Polaroid sunglasses, break them and use one lens to filter light from a torch (flashlight) and iluminate an otherwise dark scene with the polarized light. By using the other lens as a polarization analyzer see what reflection and or refraction does to the plane of polarization.
In general, reflected and refracted em waves have the polarization altered. Linear polarized waves can even end up elliptically polarized and vice versa.
“We record 8-bit full-polarization data from two orthogonal linear feeds per beam, with 1024 frequency channels over 400 MHz of bandwidth, from 1182 to 1582 MHz, and 64-μs time resolution”
...that sounds so much cooler than _any_ part of my job, Today's mission is to insert this quote - either in part or in its entirety - into today's weekly team meeting.
"Hey Brian, I've got a new sound system. We were playing around with it last night and we recorded 8-bit full-polarization data from two orthogonal linear feeds per beam, with 1024 frequency channels over 400 MHz of bandwidth, from 1182 to 1582 MHz, and 64-μs time resolution.
It sounded like that time we put the cat through the mangle when it was wet"
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The Reg recently used 'Boffins' in this article: http://www.theregister.co.uk/2015/01/17/boffins_its_easy_to_make_you_grass_yourself_up_for_crimes_you_never_did/
whereas the Reg of old would have used the term 'Trick cyclists'. What's changed?
The old Reg had the tacit understanding that 'boffins' either made cool stuff- like explosions, laser-equipped sharks and robots - or otherwise used maths so complicated that blackboards would collapse under the weight of chalk and us lesser mortals would get a headache just looking in the general direction of one of their published papers.
.- .-.. .-.. -.-- --- ..- .-. -... .- ... . .- .-. . -... . .-.. --- -. --. - --- ..- ...
We have confirmed it was not, repeat NOT 'We are the world'. Minsters are reminded of the advice by Pellegrino & Zebrowski prior to attempting any reply:
1. THEIR SURVIVAL WILL BE MORE IMPORTANT THAN OUR SURVIVAL.
If an alien species has to choose between them and us, they won't choose us. It is difficult to imagine a contrary case; species don't survive by being self-sacrificing.
2. WIMPS DON'T BECOME TOP DOGS.
No species makes it to the top by being passive. The species in charge of any given planet will be highly intelligent, alert, aggressive, and ruthless when necessary.
3. THEY WILL ASSUME THAT THE FIRST TWO LAWS APPLY TO US.
That would be news in itself, as everything else in the universe is moving away.
Apart from Andromeda, of course, which is coming over to say hi sometime in the next 4 billion years. And it's impossible to say one way or the other regarding anything outside of the "observable universe" boundary.
The vast majority of stuff definitely seems to be actively avoiding us, though ^^;
It's almost like the entire Universe has taken one look at Earth and gone "nope!"
We waste our time arguing over things like who's allowed to boink whom while tearing up the environment and killing each other over which ideology is better. Can you really blame them from trying to get away from us?
REF= Wiki, AstroPulse...Potential pulse finds... in 2010 Parks found 16 obvious terrestial signals... per the Wiki Article, none of this pulse research has actually been made public...this is the first.
IMHO= what we have here is first AstroPulse... NOT mentioning SETI or AstroPulse means they are using spare time as today's SETI stuff is privately scheduled / funded everywhere by folks who can afford to throw a small part of their funding towards non-mainstream science... REALITY= Parks is P/O the Austrialian Telescope National Facility in the Soutern Hemisphere using this microwave band for the last 50 years...many discoveries from Parks dish...RS.
All= Parks L-Band rcvr employes a wide band FDM multichannel radiometer using in-house FFT on each channel... probably 40 years old kit but still a Radio Telescope that works just fine...only a few of these left worldwide and L-Band is being looked at for mobile fone use as military and maritime radar is using bands above X-Band / 10 ghz for their present day kit.
the Austrailian Government in their "Science will no longer be funded if it doesn't yield a monetary return" has decided Parks is Redundant and will be closed / dismantled this year.
IMHO= this is the "last hurrah" of a unique museum piece that does not deserve the Benchly Park system of archiving ( take a pix , then bin it) and pix of the surrounding area cry for with at least an interpretive center b/4 being torn down and the scientists made redundant.
When this is gone, it will not be replaced..ever...RS.
Radar pulses glinting off satelites, or reflected from meteor showers, etc etc.
There are well known EM pulses with high DM detected on earth in large numbers, but which are strictly Earth based. "Whistlers" are very low frequency pulses (but lasting seconds not mlliseconds) and result from lightning flashes 'streched' by earth based plasma.
Obviously whistler signals are not FRBs and obviously the boffins have been hard at work before suggesting the origin of the signals but a close-to-home origin doesn't seem to have been definitively ruled out yet.
Occam's razor and all that.
A radio telescope cannot measure the distance to a source. It can only measure the DM (the burst is detected later at lower frequencies). The standard interpretation is that the radio signal traversed a tenuous plasma in our 'own' Galaxy and - if the RM is larger - in the extragalactic medium or near the source.
The large circular polarization of 21±7% for FRB 140514 hints at extraordinary conditions at the source. A distance of 5.5 billion light-years for FRB 140514 is an upper limit.
At 5.5 billion light-years distance, this email with attached circularly polarized lulz cat video, was sent 1 beelion years before the formation of our planet.
I can now reveal its decoded text contents. It's a chain email. Unless each recipient forwards it to 20 other civilizations by midnight Saturday, they are doomed. How the senders knew we'd be here to decode this message now may never be known, because the Chronicles end with
<Winnt_root>\System32\Hal.dll missing or corrupt:
Please re-install a copy of the above file.
I hope the boffins at Parkes know what to do next.
They will erase your VISA from light years away.
Nop, even a magnetar with 10^12T has to be at the distance of Jupiter to make its magnetic field 5 times stronger than the geomagnetic field. May be enough to erase your VISA, but I guess you will have other things to worry about with a magnetar in your backyard.
Uh, yeah that was us, it says Paul is dead. The researchers during our extra-earth outsourcing initiative thought it would be funny to bounce it off a distant pulsar, too bad they are all too dead to hear it. Damn hippies, When life gives you lemons...
Cave Johnson, We're done here.