The groundbreaking discovery of gravitational waves can open the whole new domain of cosmology. In 1915 Albert Einstein published a paper on the general theory of relativity, describes gravity as curves in the fabric of space-time by massive bodies rather than a force. The mathematical equations of the general theory of relativity predicted the existence of gravitational waves i.e formation of ripples due to distortion in the space-time fabric by the most violent astronomical phenomena such as the collision of two neutron stars, merging of two black holes, the explosion of a supernova etc.
In 1974, two astronomers from Arecibo Radio Observatory in Puerto Rico observed binary pulsars orbiting each other and getting closer. Scientists were unable to examine it practically until 2015. In morning 3:50 am on September 14, 2015 LASER INTERFEROMETER GRAVITATIONAL WAVE OBSERVATORY LIGO identified waves whose characteristics were similar to gravitation waves i.e produced by accelerating the mass, travel with the speed of light, having weak interaction and cannot be absorbed. It was produced by the collision of two black holes 1.3 million light-years away.
After 100 years of Einstein’s prediction, the significance of gravitational waves was again alive unlocking deep secrets. Annihilation after big bang would have created ripples of gravitational waves carrying information.
LIGO LASER INTERFEROMETER GRAVITATIONAL WAVE OBSERVATORY:- central building shoots a laser beam and split it perpendicularly by beam splitter in L shaped tubes 4 km long and has mirrors on both the ends. The beam of light then strikes both the mirrors resulting in destructive interference due to the cancellation of their peak alignment but distortion in space-time leads to stretching and squeezing of arms until gravitational waves fully pass the earth. This sensitive equipment can detect a gravitational wave of 1/1000 width of a proton.
In 2017, three physics Rainer Weiss, Barry C.Barish and Kip throne were honoured with Nobel prize for their contribution in LIGO project. LIGO is located in Hanford and Livingston at the distance of 3,002 km to avoid abstraction of local noise.
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