Rumors of waves changing time and space

Rumors of waves changing time and space

LIGO Observatory, where gravitational waves may have been detected. (Image: Caltech/MIT/LIGO Lab)

This time it started with a tweet. Physicist Lawrence Krauss let the cat out of the bag, and his message was picked up by many media outlets.

He previously speculated whether one of the biggest scientific breakthroughs in 2016 would be the discovery of gravitational waves. On Monday, he tweeted that the rumors had been confirmed and that the LIGO laboratory in California may have detected gravitational waves.

The Laser Interferometer Gravitational-Wave Observatory (LIGO) has recently been upgraded, and the search for elusive gravitational waves has now begun.

What is a gravitational wave?

Gravitational waves exist according to Einstein's theory of relativity. Scientists have searched for a hundred years to find these waves, but no definitive confirmation has ever emerged.

The idea is that large, massive objects in space, such as large stars or galaxies, bend and stretch their gravitational fields. This sends waves through gravitational fields, in the same way as dropping a stone into water.

But obviously the waves are very difficult to detect. The researchers aim to find waves created by extremely massive objects, such as binary stars, where two massive objects orbit each other. One of the objects may be a pulsar or a black hole.

This is how scientists imagine gravitational waves work. (Image: (Image: NASA))

LIGO tries to find the waves using interferometry. This means that laser light is sent through two tubes of equal length in different directions, and fluctuations in the light are measured.

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If there was a gravitational wave, time and space would change on a very small scale. The tubes will be longer or shorter, and researchers can pick up differences between the two laser beams that shouldn't really be there.

Here you can see a diagram of how the system works

– Nothing to display

LIGO says on its website They started the stalking back in September 2015, but didn't mention the new rumors this week.

– We are still collecting data and analyzing the information takes time, and we do not have any results that we can provide yet, says Gabriela Gonzalez to Watchman. She is a physics professor and spokesperson for the LIGO experiment.

Now it will be interesting to see what LIGO publishes during 2016. If the rumors are anything to go by, it will be a big deal in the world of physics. Scientists who have already proven the existence of gravitational waves may have a Nobel Prize in their pocket.

LIGO has received a tremendous amount of attention, but it has not spread the word itself, as far as we know.

Things didn't go so well last time

Two years ago there was also a lot of talk about gravitational waves. Then a group of astronomers came out with the news that they may have found gravitational waves from the early universe. The data came from the BICEP2 telescope in Antarctica and the Planck satellite.

This was a huge deal, and Nobel Prize speculation It started almost immediately after that.

But it didn't take long before the whole thing was exposed. It turns out that there is a measurement error Cosmic dust has interfered with the signals.

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Now we'll see if the LIGO rumor goes the same way, or if there's actually some great news coming from this side.

Dalila Awolowo

Dalila Awolowo

"Explorer. Unapologetic entrepreneur. Alcohol fanatic. Certified writer. Wannabe tv evangelist. Twitter fanatic. Student. Web scholar. Travel buff."

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