Mysterious ‘heartbeat-like’ radio signals discovered inside a solar flare

A group of researchers made a rather unusual discovery: a series of radio bursts was recorded five thousand kilometers above the surface of the Sun.

This time, researchers say the radio signals have a strange “heartbeat-like” pattern — coming from a source inside the Sun’s atmosphere and scientists are still trying to figure out what might have caused them.

The first observations date back to 2017 – the data was collected by the EOVSA radio telescope located in California. It observes the Sun in the range from 1 to 18 gigahertz. The beeps were repeated every 10-20 seconds, which the team of researchers likened to “heart rate.”

These pulses are known as quasi-periodic pulsations, QPP. Tracking their appearance, a team of astrophysicists unexpectedly discovered another source of signals. This time, the researchers were sure that they were already coming from deeper layers.

“The discovery is unexpected,” says Sijie Yu, an astronomer at the New Jersey Institute of Technology’s Center for Solar-Terrestrial Research, in a university release.

“This beating pattern is important for understanding how energy is released and dissipated in the Sun’s atmosphere during these incredibly powerful explosions on the Sun. However, the origin of these repetitive patterns, also called quasi-periodic pulsations, has long been a mystery and a source of debate among solar physicists.”

Astrophysicists believe that the discovery will help to better understand the nature of flares and other aspects of activity on the Sun.

But what is also interesting is that everything in the universe is very connected. Even the sun has a “phenomenon of the heart beating”, similar to that of living organisms.

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