Episode 184: The Milky Way’s First Fast Radio Burst, with Sandro Mereghetti

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Feature Guest: Sandro Mereghetti

Fast radio bursts are a new mystery in astronomy. These highly energetic events of unknown origin were first discovered in 2007 out in deep space. Now a team is reporting the first fast radio burst to emanate from our own Milky Way Galaxy. Today we’re joined here at The Star Spot by Sandro Mereghetti, whose team is on the hunt for the source of this unusual phenomenon.


Current in Space

Camilla shares the remarkable discovery, or rather re-discovery, of the heartbeat of a supermassive black hole in a distant galaxy, found still alive and kicking ten years after being first observed. In addition to the supermassive black hole shaping the environment at the centre of our home galaxy, Amelia and Priyanka explain that something else there is also calling the shots (and no, it’s definitely not like what we saw in Star Trek V). In other black hole news, Finally, Jeff brings us back down to Earth (though still above Earth), as SpaceX is launching ever more Starlink satellites into orbit to provide high-speed Internet coverage to citizens of our planet. There’s only one problem: the future of ground-based astronomy may be at stake.

About Our Guest

Sandro Mereghetti is research staff member at the National Institute for Astrophysics in Milan.


INTEGRAL discovery of a burst with associated radio emission from the magnetar SGR 1935+2154 (scholarly article)

Dead star emits never-before seen mix of radiation (news release)

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