Telescopes around the world have captured a blue flash from the spiral arm of a galaxy, in June, 2018, which is 00 million light years away from Earth. Scientists first thought the blue flash to be a supernova but it was faster and brighter than any stellar explosion we have witnessed till now. Scientists have levelled this as AT2018cow and they simply called it “the Cow”. Scientists have categorized as a fast blue optical transient.
But now, an MIT-led team has found evidence of the source of the signal. Scientists have found a strobe-like pulse of high-energy X-rays along with the bright optical flash of the signal. They have found millions of such X-ray pulses has occurred clockwork in every 4.4 milliseconds for 60 days.
The researchers have assumed that the X-rays must be coming from a 1,000 kilometres wide object, based on the frequency of its pulses. These kinds of objects are thought to be very compact like a small black hole.
The findings of this research have been published in the journal Nature Astronomy.
The findings suggest AT2018cow is made from a dying star. As the star was dying, it gave birth to this compact object in the form of a black hole. The new object eats the dying star from inside and this process released an enormous energy.
The researchers say they have discovered the birth of a compact object in a supernova. Researchers have witnessed such a process before and they think that this new finding will open new gates to know more about black holes and neutron stars.
AT2018cow is a type of “astronomical transients”. The flash of AT2018cow is 100 times brighter than any normal supernova. Astronomers have various explanation for the super-bright signal, such as the signal can come out of a black hole born in a supernova or maybe it can come out from a black hole stripping materials from a passing star.