It is the first time that scientists have detected a signal that originates from another galaxy located 9 billion light years away from Earth.
The radio signal was captured by the Giant Metrewave Radio Telescope located in Pune, India.
The giant radio telescope includes a field of 30 dish antennas all pointed skyward with each dish about 150 feet in diameter.
Using this sophisticated telescope, scientists detected a unique radio signal with a unique wavelength known as the 21-centimeter line or the hydrogen line. This signal is emitted by neutral hydrogen atoms.
Unfortunately, this unique signal did not come from aliens. It is emitted from a galaxy called SDSSJ0826+5630. The galaxy is a “star forming galaxy.”
The fascinating aspect about the radio signal is that it was emitted when the Milky Way Galaxy (Earth is a part of the Milky Way Galaxy) was just 4.9 billion years old. Currently, the Milky Way Galaxy is estimated to be 13.8 billion years old.
Hence, it took 9 billion years for the signal to reach Earth. For the scientists, the radio signal is one way to look back in time 9 billion years ago.
There have been other radio signals detected from nearby galaxies but this is the farthest signal detected so far.
The radio signal from SDSSJ0826+5630 has allowed the scientists to measure the mass and gas content of the galaxy. Using this information, scientists determine that the far-off galaxy may have double the mass of stars which are visible from Earth.
The study involving the discovery of this radio signal was just released in January 2023.