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Fast Radio Bursts

Fast Radio Bursts (FRBs) are millisecond-duration pulses of cosmological origin first discovered at WVU in 2007. Currently over 100 are known and come from random positions on the sky, with about a dozen having been identified with external galaxies of different types.

While their origins are still not entirely understood, it is very likely that they are produced by magnetars––highly magnetized neutron stars––which are known to emit powerful radio flares.

Researchers in GWAC on the CHIME Fast Radio Burst team was also recently awarded the 2022 2022 Lancelot M. Berkeley − New York Community Trust Prize for Meritorious Work in Astronomy.


In the News
Newly discovered Fast Radio Burst 190520 prompts more questions due to strange behavior

Newly discovered fast radio burst (FRB) 190520 shows unique behavior compared to other FRBs discovered so far.  This deviant cosmic burst was observed by an international team, co-led by researchers at West Virginia University and the Center for Gravitational Waves and Cosmology.  Professor Sarah Burke Spolaor along with then Graduate Assistant Kshitij Aggarwal, both of the WVU Department of Physics and Astronomy and the Center for Gravitational Waves and Cosmology, published their findings in Nature.  In the paper, they describe observing the unique behavior of the fast radio burst called FRB 190520.

Recent publications

  • Rafiei-Ravandi, Masoud, Smith, Kendrick M., Li, Dongzi, Masui, Kiyoshi W., Josephy, Alexander, Dobbs, Matt, Lang, Dustin, Bhardwaj, Mohit, Patel, Chitrang, Bandura, Kevin, Berger, Sabrina, Boyle, P. J., Brar, Charanjot, Breitman, Daniela, Cassanelli, Tomas, Chawla, Pragya, Adam Dong, Fengqiu, Fonseca, Emmanuel, Gaensler, B. M., Giri, Utkarsh, Good, Deborah C., Halpern, Mark, Kaczmarek, Jane, Kaspi, Victoria M., Leung, Calvin, Lin, Hsiu-Hsien, Mena-Parra, Juan, Meyers, B. W., Michilli, D., Münchmeyer, Moritz, Ng, Cherry, Petroff, Emily, Pleunis, Ziggy, Rahman, Mubdi, Sanghavi, Pranav, Scholz, Paul, Shin, Kaitlyn, Stairs, Ingrid H., Tendulkar, Shriharsh P., Vanderlinde, Keith, and Zwaniga, Andrew, 2021,  CHIME/FRB Catalog 1 Results: Statistical Cross-correlations with Large-scale Structure The Astrophysical Journal, 922. 
  • Li, D., Wang, P., Zhu, W. W., Zhang, B., Zhang, X. X., Duan, R., Zhang, Y. K., Feng, Y., Tang, N. Y., Chatterjee, S., Cordes, J. M., Cruces, M., Dai, S., Gajjar, V., Hobbs, G., Jin, C., Kramer, M., Lorimer, D. R., Miao, C. C., Niu, C. H., Niu, J. R., Pan, Z. C., Qian, L., Spitler, L., Werthimer, D., Zhang, G. Q., Wang, F. Y., Xie, X. Y., Yue, Y. L., Zhang, L., Zhi, Q. J., and Zhu, Y., 2021,  A bimodal burst energy distribution of a repeating fast radio burst sourceNature, 598, 267-271. 
  • Bhardwaj, M., Kirichenko, A. Yu., Michilli, D., Mayya, Y. D., Kaspi, V. M., Gaensler, B. M., Rahman, M., Tendulkar, S. P., Fonseca, E., Josephy, Alexander, Leung, C., Merryfield, Marcus, Petroff, Emily, Pleunis, Z., Sanghavi, Pranav, Scholz, P., Shin, K., Smith, Kendrick M., and Stairs, I. H., 2021,  A Local Universe Host for the Repeating Fast Radio Burst FRB 20181030AThe Astrophysical Journal, 919.  
  • Lanman, Adam E., Andersen, Bridget C., Chawla, Pragya, Josephy, Alexander, Kaspi, Victoria M., Bandura, Kevin, Bhardwaj, Mohit, Boyle, Patrick J., Brar, Charanjot, Breitman, Daniela, Cassanelli, Tomas, Dong, Fengqi, Fonseca, Emmanuel, Gaensler, Bryan M., Good, Deborah, Kaczmarek, Jane, Leung, Calvin, Masui, Kiyoshi W., Meyers, Bradley W., Ng, Cherry, Patel, Chitrang, Pearlman, Aaron B., Petroff, Emily, Pleunis, Ziggy, Rafiei-Ravandi, Masoud, Rahman, Mubdi, Sanghavi, Pranav, Scholz, Paul, Shin, Kaitlyn, Stairs, Ingrid, Tendulkar, Shriharsh, and Zwaniga, Andrew, 2021,  A sudden period of high activity from repeating Fast Radio Burst 20201124AarXiv e-prints.  
  • The CHIME/FRB Collaboration , Amiri, Mandana, Andersen, Bridget C., Bandura, Kevin, Berger, Sabrina, Bhardwaj, Mohit, Boyce, Michelle M., Boyle, P. J., Brar, Charanjot, Breitman, Daniela, Cassanelli, Tomas, Chawla, Pragya, Chen, Tianyue, Cliche, J. -F., Cook, Amanda, Cubranic, Davor, Curtin, Alice P., Deng, Meiling, Dobbs, Matt, Fengqiu, Dong, Eadie, Gwendolyn, Fandino, Mateus, Fonseca, Emmanuel, Gaensler, B. M., Giri, Utkarsh, Good, Deborah C., Halpern, Mark, Hill, Alex S., Hinshaw, Gary, Josephy, Alexander, Kaczmarek, Jane F., Kader, Zarif, Kania, Joseph W., Kaspi, Victoria M., Landecker, T. L., Lang, Dustin, Leung, Calvin, Li, Dongzi, Lin, Hsiu-Hsien, Masui, Kiyoshi W., Mckinven, Ryan, Mena-Parra, Juan, Merryfield, Marcus, Meyers, Bradley W., Michilli, Daniele, Milutinovic, Nikola, Mirhosseini, Arash, Münchmeyer, Moritz, Naidu, Arun, Newburgh, Laura, Ng, Cherry, Patel, Chitrang, Pen, Ue-Li, Petroff, E mily, Pinsonneault-Marotte, Tristan, Pleunis, Ziggy, Rafiei-Ravandi, Masoud, Rahman, Mubdi, Ransom, Scott M., Renard, Andre, Sanghavi, Pranav, Scholz, Paul, Shaw, J. Richard, Shin, Kaitlyn, Siegel, Seth R., Sikora, Andrew E., Singh, Saurabh, Smith, Kendrick M., Stairs, Ingrid, Tan, Chia Min, Tendulkar, S. P., Vanderlinde, Keith, Wang, Haochen, Wulf, Dallas, and Zwaniga, A. V., 2021,  First CHIME/FRB Fast Radio Burst Catalog, arXiv e-prints.