Space is screaming – It’s some 6 times louder in space than anyone predicted.
In the words of Alan Kogut from the Goddard Space Center, “The universe really threw us a curve. Instead of the faint signal we hoped to find, here was this booming ‘noise’ six times louder than anyone had predicted.”
Of course, there is no sound in space. What NASA’s ARCADE system received was actually deafening cosmic radio background, and the source is completely unknown at this time. Normally radio telescopes pick up electromagnetic chatter in the 10 MHz and 100 GHz, coming from what are known as “radio galaxies.” But according to our existing models and theories, the signal shouldn’t exist, as there are “not enough radio galaxies to account for the signal.”
As detailed by Jesus when this story initially broke earlier this year, NASA said that to create this signal, “you’d have to pack [radio galaxies] into the universe like sardines. There wouldn’t be any space left between one galaxy and the next.” That’s obviously not the case.
The discovery, while amazing, also carries with it a substantial negative. Remember all that cool stuff about dark flow and the edge of the universe from earlier? Well, the BOOM complicates our efforts to detect it more accurately.
Originally via Gizmodo.