Gravitational Waves Detected 100 Years after Einstein’s Theory
source: CNRS News
Masterstroke for physics: by detecting gravitational waves for the first time, the LIGO and Virgo collaborations were also first in observing a collision between two black holes, thus opening a new window to the Universe.
After a search that lasted half a century, physicists—more precisely those working since 2007 as part of the international collaboration associating the LIGO (US) and Virgo (Europe) observatories—have finally found the Holy Grail: the first direct observation of a gravitational wave caused by the collision of two black holes. Not only does this discovery further validate Einstein’s theory, it also brings astronomy into a new era by providing an entirely novel way to observe the most violent phenomena in the Universe.
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International collaboration has been especially crucial in this discovery, French minister for higher education and research M. Thierry Mandon emphasized. 75 French scientists from 6 CNRS laboratories have been involved in the project.
British scientists and institutions (Science and Technology Facilities Council, universities of Glasgow, Cardiff, Birmingham etc.) have also brought a major support to the project, which involved 19 European laboratories.