Astroparticle Colloquia

Fast Radio Bursts, mysterious probes of the Universe

by Dr Marta Burgay (INAF\Osservatorio Cagliari)


Fast Radio Bursts (FRBs) are very short, very bright flashes of radio waves originating from sources at extragalactic distances, the origin of which is still unknown. Thanks to their unique characteristics (distance, brightness, millisecond-duration, extremely high event rate), FRB signals can be used as probes of the intergalactic medium (e. g. to trace the so-called missing baryons in the Universe) and more. In this talk I will review the main observational properties of FRBs, briefly discuss the main models proposed to explain their nature, and present possible uses of their signals in the context of cosmological studies. I will also present some of the most recent observational discoveries that may help us to finally understand the still mysterious nature of FRBs.