They detected the brightest gamma-ray burst of all time

They detected the brightest gamma-ray burst of all time
Illustration showing the components of a long gamma-ray burst of the most common type (EFE/NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center)

“Ever Bright” Gamma-ray Burst (GRB) Astronomers have named it this way. It happened 2,000 million light-years away from Earth and its study will be crucial in understanding the details of these events.

An intense burst of gamma-ray radiation detected on October 9 last year swept across our solar system, and astronomers studied the event with the world’s most powerful telescopes. Some results are published today Astrophysical Journal Letters.

Listed as Eruption GRB 221009A It is truly extraordinary, and statistically expected to occur only once every several thousand years, “it may even be the brightest gamma-ray burst since the dawn of human civilization,” according to the European Space Agency (ESA).

Data from this rare event will become crucial in understanding the details of the massive explosions that produce gamma-ray bursts.

X-rays from explosions It illuminated 20 dust clouds in our galaxyAllows you to determine your distances and properties with greater precision than ever before.

However, a mystery remains as the debris from the stellar explosion that produced the gamma-ray burst seems to have disappeared without a trace.

He Swift Neil Gehrels Lab of Pot He was the first to discover X, and the source appeared to be located in the Milky Way, far from the galactic center.

However, observations by the European Southern Observatory’s (ESO) Very Large Telescope (VLT) put it far beyond our own galaxy and about two million light-years away, so it must be exceptionally bright.

“It’s more or less the difference between a typical gamma-ray burst and the light bulb in your living room and the bright spotlights in a sports stadium,” he explained. Andrew Levin, James Webb of Radboud University in the Netherlands is observing it using the Hubble Space Telescope.

European Southern Observatory (ESO) (Photo: Atlantic)

“This is a very revealing event. We were very lucky to see it,” said ESA researcher specializing in GRB Alicia Rouco.

Emission of rays from a GRB Lasted more than 300 seconds And astronomers believe that such events, when “long-lived,” could be the “birth cry” of a black hole, which forms when the core of a rapidly spinning massive star collapses under its own weight.

The Harvard Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics (USA) explains that the newborn black hole fires powerful jets of plasma near the speed of light, which pass through the collapsing star and glow with gamma rays.

Calculations show that in those seconds, the eruption deposited approx One gigawatt of energy in the Earth’s upper atmosphere, This is equivalent to that produced by a terrestrial power plant, and many gamma and X-rays were emitted that excited the Earth’s ionosphere”, highlights Erik Kulkers, ESA’s Integrated Project Scientist.

This phenomenon was so bright that it is still known today as residual radiation The glow is still visible And it will continue to be visible “for years,” says Volodymyr Savchenko, a scientist at the University of Geneva, which will allow further study of the eruption.

Data collected by various instruments are combined to understand how the original explosion occurred and how the radiation interacted with other objects as it traveled through space.

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One area that has already yielded scientific results is the way X-rays illuminate our galaxy’s dust clouds.

The radiation traveled about two billion years apart before entering our galaxy. He found the first dust cloud about 60,000 years ago, and the last about 1,000 years ago.

(with information from EFE)

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Arzu Daniel

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