West Virginia University’s Duncan Lorimer might be the godfather of the fast radio burst, but a pair of international students has taken exploring these mysterious cosmic flashes to a new level.
In 2007, Lorimer was credited for helping discover fast radio bursts - intense, unexplained pulses of energy, light years away, that pop for mere milliseconds. Ever since, only around 100 have been spotted.
But astronomers knew there were more out there. One major obstacle to new discoveries came in the form of researchers having to manually read data plots, recorded with radio telescopes, for hours on end.
Devansh Agarwal and Kshitij Aggarwal, both physics and astronomy graduate students from India, recognized this painstaking task so they developed a quicker, more efficient way to detect fast radio bursts. They created artificial intelligent, machine-learning software that sifts through the endless clutters of data.
Fast Radio Bursts: The Story So Far...
Professor Lorimer tells the story of Fast Radio Bursts’ discovery, summarize what we know so far, describe the science opportunities these bursts present, and make predictions for what we will learn in the next decade.
Watch the video on YouTube
Music of the Stars: The Sounds of Pulsars
Radio telescopes detect the signals from pulsars, which we can then convert to audible sound.
Little Green Men
Learn about the Pulsar Search Collaboratory through this feature length documentary that follows high-school students from Green Bank to their schools to WVU and includes interviews with WVU faculty and students. While not yet available to view or purchase online, you can request a showing of this documentary at your school or institution.
Teenage Radio Wave Hunters
This short video captures a day in the life of Pulsar Search Collaboratory students at Green Bank.
Watch and listen to a danced lecture and orchestral concert about Einstein! This event was held at WVU in April 2017 and attended by over 1000 students and members of the community.
Strange Signals from Outer Space
Research by WVU professors Lorimer and McLaughlin is featured in this BBC documentary. Watch a spaceship hover over Morgantown! Learn about fast radio bursts!