The waves were detected on 14th September 2015.
The twin LIGO instruments in the states of Washington and Louisiana use a split laser beam to detect infinitesimal changes in length between L-shaped arms as gravitational waves pass through.
The waves are created by cataclysmic events, like the collision of black holes or exploding stars, in the distant universe.
The discovery of gravitational waves could totally shake up our understanding of the universe.
A stunning scientific discovery has the world of astronomy gaping.
Based on the observed signals, LIGO scientists estimated that the black holes for this event were about 29 and 36 times the mass of the sun, and the event took place 1.3 billion years ago.
Professors David Reitze and Gabriela Gonzalez spoke about their Laser Interferometer Gravitational-wave Observatory project breakthrough, alongside France Cordoba of the National Science Foundation.
“We could point the best telescopes, sensitive to more or less any electromagnetic wavelength of light, at this system and probably see nothing”, said Nergis Mavalvala, a professor of astrophysics at MIT.
Since gravity is a weak force, Einstein predicted it would be almost impossible to detect these ripples, even as they passed through people and objects on Earth. Similar gravitational waves have probably passed through the Earth before, but this time, someone was watching.
The idea that gravitational waves come from non-other than Albert Einstein and his published work on the Theory of General Relativity in 1915.
“It would have been wonderful to watch Einstein’s face had we been able to tell him”, he added.
“As part of his theory of relativity and now it’s something we can actually prove”, O’Leary said. Effectively, scientists are removing a blindfold – they could soon have a much more complete picture of space that answers some longstanding questions. 30 times mass of the sun. accelerate it to about half the speed of light and collide them together. Also, gravitational waves are unchanged by the matter they move through.
Why is the discovery important?
. Scientists say the finding opens a new way of observing the cosmos.