One of the rarest event in the universe, a Black Widow star system, can be the key to unlock the secrets of our Sun
Our universe is filled with unsolved mysteries and this particular black widow star system has emerged as one of the biggest mysteries to solve. A dead star is sending pulsars (radio signals from a star that cannot be seen) to Earth. These pulsars are being sent every 4 milliseconds. But the pulsars do not mean any harm to our planet. On the contrary, they can reveal secrets about the space-time continuum and unanswered questions about our own star. What is a black widow star system? And how exactly can a pulsar be so crucial to us? Read on to find out.
The information comes from a new study published in the pre-print database arXiv, where researchers have not only found this black widow star system but claim that this star system in particular is the key to understanding the universe. While the claims are big, they are not without any merit. According to the researchers, this black widow star system is not only predictable to a great extent but its pulsar frequency is also very low, making it an extremely rare phenomenon.
What are black widow star system
Black widow star systems are unique in our universe. It is a binary star system where one star is dead and has turned into a red giant or a white dwarf. Its companion is an active but smaller (one-tenth of the dead star’s size or less) star which revolves around it. Due to the high magnetic field of the dead star, it slowly consumes matter from the active star till the smaller star completely dies. This behavior is the reason why it has been named black widow after a species of a spider where the larger female consumes the male.
What is black widow pulsar
When the dead star continuously pulls in matter from the living star, the resultant reaction is a release of energy. On Earth, we receive these energies from far away stars as radio waves. But instead of being continuous energy, they pulsate at a specific frequency. For instance, the black widow in discussion here, named J0610−2100, sends radio frequency every 4 milliseconds. This specific characteristic is only seen in this specific star system and is called black widow pulsar.
How can this black widow star system reveal the truth about Sun and space-time continuum
There are two interesting factors with this black widow star system. Researchers have not seen any star system with this level of predictability. As the other star eclipses the dead star, the pulsars become irregular and show weird glitches. There are almost none present in this one. Further, with just a 4 millisecond gap, it is also very frequent. These two factors make it very easy to study one of the rarest phenomena in the world. Something that directly ties into not only our Sun but the entire space-time continuum – gravitational waves. Researchers believe that these steady black widow pulsars will help them in understanding these rare waves that can dictate the possibility of opening the gates to another dimension.