Millisecond pulsars are known for their stability in behaviour.
Millisecond pulsar: Astronomers in India are being said to have observed a stream of signals that are out of sync. The signals are emerging from a millisecond pulsar and indicate a large undetected event that might have taken place in the Universe, according to a report in IE. The observations were made by 40 astronomers as part of the Indian Pulsar Timing Array or InPTA, with the help of a uGMRT or an upgraded Giant Metrewave Radio Telescope. It was concluded that both the signals’ rhythm as well as the clock behaviour were abnormal.
As per the report, pulsars are dense and dead star matter. This matter has super fast rotations during which it sends out flash radio signals. These signals are emitted at fixed time intervals in the form of flash lights. Due to this, pulsars act as the Universe’s cosmic clocks.
The aberration, however, was noticed by the astronomers, including senior scientists, in the radio flashes that PSR J1 713+0747 was emitting, and the observations were made in April and May.
The report cited the scientists as saying that this event marked the largest ever change that has been observed in any pulsar clock. Millisecond pulsars are known for their stability in behaviour and are therefore used for detection of ultra-low frequency nanohertz gravitational (nHz) waves, the report added.
Notably, carrying out observations to detect such elusive gravitational waves is what the InPTA is involved in.
However, not much is understood by the scientists about this event. The report has cited them as saying that they are continuously tracking this object and would be making more observations using the uGMRT so that further data can be obtained. More observational data would be needed to understand more about this unexpected event.