Albert Einstein first predicted the existence of gravitational waves, which are now expected to be declared as discovered. Scientists are holding a news conference on Thursday, Feb. 11, at 10:30 a.m. EST at the National Press Club in Washington, D.C., to discuss the search for gravitational waves.
These gravitational waves are ripples in the fabric of spacetime that transport energy. They were predicted by Albert Einstein in 1916 in the very famous theory of general relativity. They could theoretically help scientists study black holes and other mysterious bodies.
By the use of a machine named Advanced LIGO, which is the updated form of the Laser Interferometer Gravitational-Wave Observatory (LIGO), scientists can fire lasers and when reflected perpendicular to one another creating a specific interference pattern, they can detect a gravitational wave.
Advanced LIGO is the most advanced gravitational wave observatory ever constructed, and the first one to actually see a true signal. It is the largest scientific collaboration with nearly 1,000 scientists on board.
On Thursday, the scientists from the Advanced LIGO collaboration are going to make a big announcement. It is expected that they announce the ending of the long search for gravitational waves since they have finally been detected and are possibly created by the collision of two massive black holes travelling close to the speed of light.
One of the two black holes would be 29 times more massive than the sun, and the other 36 times more massive. They would spin around each other and finally crash together to form a new black hole 62 times the mass of the sun. LIGO is believed to be able to detect the missing mass that is converted into energy and released as gravitational waves.
There are two Advanced LIGO systems: one in Washington and the other one in Louisiana. Scientists believe that if both detectors see the same thing, the very first gravitational wave will be detected. If this actually happens, the Einstein’s theory of relativity will be proved to be right, as well as proving that gravitational radiation is real and that merging black holes not only produces them, but that these waves can be detected.
Source: The Guardian