Scientists have found something that appears to be moving 7 times the speed of light

Scientists have found something that appears to be moving 7 times the speed of light

It can’t be right.

Fast demon

In 2017, scientists observed a spectacular collision of the two Neutron stars It blasted a jet of radiation so powerful that NASA says the energy it released was “comparable to that of a supernova.” Press release by organization.

But complexity has taken scientists until now to unpack all the data collected. Among other fascinating finds: stuff displayed Traveling faster than light – which of course is impossible. But don’t worry. There is a perfectly reasonable explanation.

Evil has a new enemy. Evil has a new enemy

The event, designated GW170817, is known as a binary neutron star merger. Neutron stars are the collapsed cores of once massive stars and some of the densest matter in the universe. According to NASA, just one teaspoon would weigh four billion tons on Earth.

With this kind of unprecedented density comes great gravity — enough to pull these two neutron stars together in an explosive collision that launched gravitational waves and gamma rays into space, the first time scientists have detected both from a neutron star merger, NASA said.

The Hubble Space Telescope observed two neutron stars collapsing into a black hole after the explosion. A spinning disk then formed around the black hole, beaming incredibly fast jets of matter into space. Combining their findings with the National Science Foundation, scientists were able to piece together the event with extreme precision — including how fast the jets were moving.

breaking the law

Initially, from Hubble observations, it appeared that the jets were traveling at seven times the speed of light. Of course, that’s impossible. Scientists attribute this discrepancy to a phenomenon known as supraliminal motion. Basically, because the jet approaches our planet at nearly the speed of light, NASA says, the light it emits to the next point has a shorter distance to travel each time, making it seem like it’s moving faster than it really is.

With some additional calculations, the scientists found the true speed: at least 99.97 percent the speed of light — which, to be fair, is still pretty fast.

Scientists hope, in their research published one paper this week the natureThe future will allow more precise observations of neutron star mergers, which could potentially help calculate the expansion rate of the universe.

More about them: A vast graveyard of stars surrounds our galaxy, scientists say

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