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Odd Radio Circle

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Astronomers have found of a rare and mysterious space object named Odd Radio Circles (ORCs). These are gigantic rings of radio waves. Only five have ever been seen.

The image of ORC J2103-6200, also dubbed ORC1, was captured by the high-resolution MeerKAT radio telescope in South Africa.

The new MeerKAT radio data shows that the ORC’s large outer circle is possibly more than a million light years across, ten times the diameter of the Milky Way, with a series of smaller rings inside.

The first three ORCs, including ORC1, were discovered using the Australian Square Kilometre Array Pathfinder (ASKAP) telescope in 2019. A fourth was identified in archival data from India’s Giant MetreWave Radio Telescope in 2013, and a fifth was discovered by Koribalski in newer ASKAP data in 2021.Most of the ORCs have a galaxy at their centre, which astronomers suggest might have something to do with their creation.

The fact that is puzzling the scientists is ORCs have been spied only in radio wavelengths and have not been detected by optical or X-ray telescopes.

Though there are three different theories regarding the origin of ORC scientists are yet to reach a solid confirmation. The first one says they are created from a shock wave from the centre of their galaxy, similar to what happens when two supermassive black holes’ merge. The second theory says that they result from the activities of an active galactic nucleus, with radio jets spewing particles to create the ORC’s shape. The third theory says ORCs are shells caused by starbursts in the centre of their galaxies.

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