Monday, March 28, 2016 - 16:00
Event Speaker: 
James Brau
Local Contact: 
Davide Lazzati

Nearly one century after Albert Einstein predicted (ref-1) the existence of gravitational waves (Ebene Gravitationswellen), this elusive form of radiation has been detected in the Laser Interferometer Gravitational-Wave Observatory (LIGO).  Coincident detections appeared in LIGO's two interferometers, in Hanford, WA and in Livingston, LA, on September 14, 2015 at 2:51 a.m. Pacific Daylight Time (09:51 UTC). Subsequent analysis of the signals revealed the source to be the coalescence of two massive black holes, each of about 30 solar masses, at a distance of about one billion light-years. I will discuss this discovery and the emerging field of gravitational wave astronomy.

1 - Einstein, A (June 1916). "Näherungsweise Integration der Feldgleichungen der Gravitation". Sitzungsberichte der Königlich Preussischen Akademie der Wissenschaften Berlin. part 1: 688–696.