back to article Weird radio pulses could be coming from new type of stellar object

Astronomers believe they may have discovered a new type of stellar object after spotting something that has been beaming radio pulses every 22 minutes for more than three decades. The oddity, code named GPM J1839−10, lies about 15,000 light-years away, and was detected by an international team of researchers. They were …

  1. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    15,000 light years they say

    Those double glazing adverts are relentless.

    1. druck Silver badge

      Re: 15,000 light years they say

      I think you are on to something there, as the adverts are always so much louder than the programs.

  2. Pascal Monett Silver badge

    Data analysis is king

    Another "hmm, that's strange" moment in scientific history that will likely produce a major discovery and, possibly, new mechanics in astrophysics.

    I'm rather excited about this, can't wait to hear about it from scientific sources.

    That said, the data has been stored for the past three decades, and they only find it now because nobody was looking for it before ?

    Somebody get an AI on that data, pronto. For once we have something a statistical analysis machine can actually be good for, it would be shame not to.

    1. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

      Re: Data analysis is king

      It seems that this one source would repay such study. According to other reports there's a fair bit of variability in the source.

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      I'm doing my part!

      Einstein@Home is a similar project, trawling radio telescope data for undiscovered signals, although they're more interested in binary pulsars to find candidates for gravitational waves.

  3. xanadu42

    Old Data is still Good Data

    Considering all of the astronomical data that has been collected over the decades and not processed at the time, because of cost or a lack of something or other (computing speed, software, etc ?), it is good to see that the recorded petabytes/exabytes/or-larger (quettabytes?) of data are being re-examined and yielding new information and understanding...

    As long as the input data is not garbage (unlikely?) there will not be garbage out...

    Using a computer-learning model (I hate the use of "AI") to analyse ALL of this old data will probably lead to even greater understanding of the Universe we live in and the Planet we live on

    1. trindflo Bronze badge

      Re: Old Data is still Good Data

      Please don't cry: much of the old data ROTted.

      The data was on magnetic tapes. They were not all cared for properly. IT started noticing a phenomenon called ROT. You had a Read Once Tape. The tape is made of mylar with ferro magnetic metal glued on. When one of these tapes is read, the bending of the mylar around the read heads of the tape drive is enough to cause the deteriorated glue to release the metal oxide. Once the tape has been through the drive once, much of the data has literally fallen on the floor. So they developed a procedure for thoroughly cleaning the tape drive, reading the tape through and capturing what they could, and trying to rebuild lost data they could infer from checksums. It was a tedious process, and for data that was deemed worth it they could get quite a bit off the tapes. Not all the data was recovered, and not all the data was deemed important enough to spend the budget on trying to recover it.

      1. Claptrap314 Silver badge

        Re: Old Data is still Good Data

        Humph! That was NEVER a problem with the punchcards. Kids and their new-fangled toys...

  4. Roj Blake Silver badge

    I'm not saying it's aliens...

    but it's definitely aliens

    1. Zippy´s Sausage Factory

      Re: I'm not saying it's aliens...

      It's either a traffic beacon or an intergalactic number station.

  5. Andy 73 Silver badge

    After fifty years..

    After fifty years of decoding the painfully slow - 1 bit every 22 minutes - message, they finally understood the signal:

    "Come and dine at Joe's Galactic Burgers - the finest Xyugn meat in the Universe!"

    1. Brewster's Angle Grinder Silver badge

      Re: After fifty years..

      You can't post shit like that on here without expecting someone to take it apart.

      Coded as 8-bit ASCII, and transmitting 1 bit every 22 minutes, it would take 9 days 18 hours and 40 minutes to transmit those characters; not 50 years. Maybe it's a bitmap?

      1. The Oncoming Scorn Silver badge

        Re: After fifty years..

        Maybe theres data, plans & schematics in the non interlaced lines of a video signal.

        1. TheMaskedMan Silver badge

          Re: After fifty years..

          "Maybe theres data, plans & schematics in the non interlaced lines of a video signal."

          For a hyperspace bypass, no doubt :/

      2. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: After fifty years..

        its a scratch and sniff email add for the space burgers

  6. Anonymous Anti-ANC South African Coward

    Maybe it's a Jawanda...

    1. Sceptic Tank Silver badge

      Anti-ANC nogal? I like ...

  7. alain williams Silver badge

    Two faced star

    Maybe it is a favourite destination for alien politicians.

    1. deive

      Re: Two faced star

      That's no two-faced star... this is!

  8. Sceptic Tank Silver badge

    A technician has already been dispatched.

    It's just a neutron star that requires a new timing belt. No need to get excited.

  9. Tim_the_Unenchanter

    Maybe it’s a lighthouse preventing the deaths of countless screaming (cosmic) Argonauts?

  10. sitta_europea Silver badge

    Not that I can't take a bit of light-hearted ragging, but could it just be precessing?

    1. trindflo Bronze badge

      Or an interstellar cloud causing a lensing effect.

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