The universe is a timeless mystery. Every new discovery opens up new possibilities, a step closer to understanding the wonder of the endless celestial space. Neutron stars are basically corpses of supernovas. They are a collection of dense matter that when compressed, weigh hundreds of thousands more than the Earth. When two neutron stars collide, their collision gives off gravitational light and waves of energy.
The University of East Anglia led a team that discovered something new about dead stars and how they contribute to the universe’s expansion.
A pulsar - a radio wave-emitting magnetized neutron star - which they named PSR J1913-1102, was found out to be part of a binary system, meaning that it is also co-orbiting with another neutron star.
What makes the new discovery stand out though, is the large mass difference of the two neutron stars, although most theories assume that when neutron stars are from binary systems, they are almost of the same mass. They examined this using the Arecibo radio telescope in Puerto Rico.
The first collision between neutron stars was first observed in 2017. The phenomenon created a surge of ripples through space-time fabric, consistent with Albert Einstein’s predictions many years ago. The GW-170817 - the name of the collision - caused gamma-ray bursts that are said to be capable of producing various elements like gold. The light produced by the collision is observable in conventional telescopes.
These events happen at least once every 50,000 years, so the magnitude of the power that the collision exudes is a mystery that we have yet to unravel. Another curious and mind-blowing possibility presents itself: that in the far universe, there are also other binary systems of neutron stars colliding and releasing massive amounts of energy waves. A celestial event like this implies the existence of other new forms of matter contained within, a dense matter that is still unknown to our world.