Lord of the Rings
Astronomers have found four distant, annular objects in space that they say are unlike what was previously observed.
The rings, like Live science compared to floating islands, have been temporarily named “odd radio circles” or ORCs, as they look like strongly glowing discs when viewed at radio wavelengths. Scientists can’t tell what they are, or even how far they are away from us, but they are starting to explore some new hugs.
The ORCs cannot be detected by infrared, X-rays and visible light spectrums, but were detected at radio frequencies through a project called the Evolutionary Map of the Universe (EMU), according to reprints shared online last month.
“This is a really nice indication of the shape of things that will come in radio astronomy over the next few years,”
The next step will be to find out what these ORCs actually are – the astronomers behind the study have already ruled out supernovae, star formation, planetary nebulae or lens effects on gravitational lenses, Live science reports.
Since visible galaxies are in the middle of two of the ORCs as a distant bullseye, scientists believe the bizarre rings could be shockwaves linked to some kind of galactic event. But right now, Live science reports, every potential explanation is just a trained guess.
READ MORE: Four mysterious objects discovered in deep space are unlike ever seen[[[[Live science]
More about space: Researchers are considering Gory Mayhem of zero-gravity surgery