The mysterious ‘blitzar’ has been heard since 2007, but scientists have caught it live for the first time.
But a team of scientists from Swinburne University in Melbourne, Australia has identified one of them live, as it happened.
A mysterious "fast radio burst" was seen for the first time in real time by astronomers,
a strange phenomenon whose origins have yet to be discovered, new research finds.
[Pictured: An illustration of CSIRO's Parkes radio telescope receiving the polarized signal from the new 'fast radio burst'.]
When the blitzar was spotted by a team led by Emily Petroff, other telescopes were turned towards the source, helping to study the aftereffects. They didn't see any afterglow - ruling out some of the possible sources such as a supernova.
Scientists hope that they will soon discover another blitzar in a different frequency range. That will allow them to conclusively associate it with something and will help pin it down to a specific source.