NCRA astronomers discover rare radio stars
Part of: Prelims and GS-III – Space
Context A team of astronomers from the Pune-based National Centre for Radio Astrophysics (NCRA-TIFR) have used the upgraded Giant Metrewave Radio Telescope (uGMRT) to discover eight stars belonging to a rare category called ‘Main-sequence Radio Pulse’ emitters or MRPs.
- The discovery will aid in the understanding of “exotic” radio stars and stellar magnetospheres.
- The current notion of MRPs as rare objects may not be correct. Rather, they are probably more common but are difficult to detect.
- The reason for the difficult detection of MRPs was that the radio pulses are visible only at certain times and the phenomenon is mostly observable at low radio frequencies.
What are MRPs?
- The MRPs are stars hotter than the Sun with unusually strong magnetic fields, and are much stronger than stellar winds (a continuous flow of gas from a star’s upper atmosphere).