What Albert Einstein theorized 100 years ago has been now detected and confirmed by scientists. Scientists have been able to detect “Gravitational Waves” using twin Laser Interferometer Gravitational-wave Observatory (LIGO) detectors at LIGO laboratory in Louisiana. This is a revolutionary and ground-breaking discovery!! This discovery has been eluding scientists for long and now it enables them to put the pieces of puzzle together to understand Space in a different way altogether.
Gravitational Waves are ripples in the fabric of spacetime that can get created by even our actions but their detection is possible only when something of a huge scale like merging of Black Holes takes place. Check some important parts from the National Science Foundation’s “Press Release”.
For the first time, scientists have observed ripples in the fabric of spacetime called gravitational waves, arriving at Earth from a cataclysmic event in the distant universe. This confirms a major prediction of Albert Einstein’s 1915 general theory of relativity and opens an unprecedented new window to the cosmos.
Gravitational waves carry information about their dramatic origins and about the nature of gravity that cannot be obtained from elsewhere. Physicists have concluded that the detected gravitational waves were produced during the final fraction of a second of the merger of two black holes to produce a single, more massive spinning black hole. This collision of two black holes had been predicted but never observed.
The gravitational waves were detected on Sept. 14, 2015 at 5:51 a.m. EDT (09:51 UTC) by both of the twin Laser Interferometer Gravitational-wave Observatory (LIGO) detectors, located in Livingston, Louisiana, and Hanford, Washington. The LIGO observatories are funded by the National Science Foundation (NSF), and were conceived, built and are operated by the California Institute of Technology (Caltech) and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT). The discovery, accepted for publication in the journal Physical Review Letters, was made by the LIGO Scientific Collaboration (which includes the GEO Collaboration and the Australian Consortium for Interferometric Gravitational Astronomy) and the Virgo Collaboration using data from the two LIGO detectors.
The most significant use of Gravitational Waves may be in the study of Black Holes, Supernovaes to finally understand how the Universe works. It can reveal a lot about cataclysmic events in the universe. For example, collisions between Black holes (that’s what enabled this discovery), Neutron Stars’s death, Supernovae and more.