Astronomers are still finding strange objects that defy expectations. According to BBC News, researchers from the Curtin University node of the International Centre for Radio Astronomy Research (ICRAR) have discovered a strange spinning Milky Way object about 4,000 light-years away. The repeating transient sent a giant burst of polarized radio energy for a full minute every 18 minutes, and was appearing and disappearing over the course of a few hours of observations — for context, a pulsar's burst lasts a few seconds or less.
The curiosity is smaller than the Sun, but is one of the brightest radio objects in the sky during its bursts. The disappearances were also unique, according to team lead Dr. Natasha Hurley-Walker. Curtin student Tyrone O'Doherty first spotted the object using the combination of Australia's Murchison Widefield Array and a new observation method.
There might be an existing explanation. Hurley-Walker said the data matched a predicted (but as-yet undiscovered) object known as an ultra-long period magnetar. That is, it's a neutron star spinning at a relatively lethargic pace. Even if that's the case, though, scientists want to know why the object is converting magnetic energy to radio waves at such an efficient rate. It could also be a white dwarf with an unusually strong magnetic field, or something else altogether.
The frenzy appears to have subsided, but Hurley-Walker is still tracking the object in case it exhibits the odd behavior again. She also plans to sift through the Murchison array's archives to learn if there were similar objects before. Whatever this entity might be, the findings are significant — they could shape our understanding of stars and the universe at large.
, Sega and Two Point Studios' follow up to , will arrive on May 17th. The quirky college life simulator is coming to PC, PlayStation 4, PS5, Xbox Series X/S and Nintendo Switch. Xbox Game Pass and PC Game Pass subscribers can play at no extra cost on launch day.
You'll be able to build a dream (or nightmare) college campus from the ground up, from residence halls and classrooms to ornamental pathways and forests. Players will be able to give students a college experience packed with relationships and extracurricular activities, such as concerts and a sport called Cheese Ball, and possibly even an education.
Students can take classes such as gastronomy and robotics, and they each have their own character traits to be catered to. Keeping students happy and helping them earn strong grades can boost your college's prestige, allowing you to enroll more students and boost the institution's bank balance.
Pre-orders for most platforms are open today, and will be available on the Switch eShop later. Locking in a pre-order will net you in-game goodies for not only Two Point Campus, but Two Point Hospital as well.
It's not just the dark web marketplace operators who face the law — sometimes it's the people who facilitate access to those marketplaces. Israeli national and Brazil resident Tal Prihar has been sentenced to eight years in prison for his alleged role in a dark web money laundering scheme. He and co-defendant Michael Phan reportedly received the equivalent of $8.4 million in Bitcoin kickbacks for agreeing to link illegal dark net marketplaces from their news site DeepDotWeb. To hide the cryptocurrency's origins, Prihar laundered the money by transferring payments to other Bitcoin accounts and conventional bank accounts tied to shell companies.
Prihar pleaded guilty in March 2021, and had already agreed to forfeit $8.4 million. Phan is still in the midst of extradition from Israel to face a money laundering charge.
The relatively stiff sentence might be a message to others who'd serve as brokers for illegal dark web outlets. If you knowingly point users to contraband (including illegal guns, hacking tools and drugs) and receive payment for it, you're apparently as culpable as anyone selling those underground items. Whether or not this is an effective deterrent, it's clear the feds don't want to look soft.