New Kind of Cosmic Object Discovered

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"For each object, we've been detecting radio emission for less than one second a day."

Because the new objects are usually silent, the odds of spotting one are low. The identification of 11 RRATs therefore suggests that many more—perhaps several hundred thousand—are silently spinning in the galaxy.

Scientists are particularly interested in neutron stars because they offer a look at super high-density matter.

"Pulsars in many ways are the most extreme objects out there, next to black holes," Stairs, of the University of British Columbia, said.

"They have extreme conditions that you could never produce in a lab."

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