A group of Australian scientists have achieved a world first by capturing alien radio signals soaring through space.
The team at Swinburne University in Melbourne, led by Emily Petroff, believe the achievement will help astronomers understand the cosmic phenomenon that has scientists baffled.
Miss Petroff told News Corp that the radio bursts are only as long as a blink of an eye.
She said: "This makes the discovery so exciting.
“Because we were able to catch the act, as opposed to existing data sets, we were able to reveal that the radiation produced by FRB was more than 20 per cent circularly polarised and this suggests there were strong magnetic fields near the source.”
The lead scientist admitted that the origin of the source remains unknown but experts believe
it had to be huge, cataclysmic and up to 5.5 billion light years away, reports New Scientist or as a result of an exploding star
Ms Petroff told News Corp: “There are two competing models to explain the phenomenon.
“One suggests it is caused by the collapse or explosion of a star in other another galaxy, while the other suggests it comes from some sort of energy flaring from a neutron star."
The results were picked up by the Parkes Telescope — a 64m diameter parabolic dish used for radio astronomy in New South Wales.