Gravitational Waves

Date(s) - Sunday, October 22

First Church Library



Gravitational Waves
Andrea Prestwich and Edwin Taylor
Sunday, October 22, 12:30pm, Library

Two years ago the first gravitational waves from a pair of coalescing black holes was detected by the LIGO Observatory. This monumental discovery opened up the era of gravitational wave astronomy, provided impressive confirmation of Einstein’s theory of general relativity and was awarded the 2017 Nobel Physics Prize.

On Monday Oct 16 the LIGO and VIRGO teams announced the detection of gravitational waves from the coalescence of two neutron stars. This event triggered observations from 70 telescopes on planet earth and several more in space (including the Chandra X-ray Observatory and the Hubble Space Telescope).

Andrea will give a brief overview of neutron stars, supernovae and gamma ray bursts and tie these phenomena together to explain the significance of this new result. Edwin will add some personal and professional accounts of his friendships with two of the three Nobel Prize winners.

Refreshments served.

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