Observatory proposed to detect gravitational waves


A view of a supercomputer simulation of merging black holes sending out gravitational waves. Sincerely: NASA / C Henze

Researchers can explore more mergers of black holes and neutron stars, going a step further with plans for a new major gravitational wave observatory in Europe.


A proposal has been submitted to include the Einstein Telescope (ET) in the European Strategic Forum for Research Infrastructure (ESFRI) roadmap, which will be able to observe the entire universe through gravitational waves.

ET is a proposed ground-based gravitational wave detector that will be able to test Einstein’s general theory of relativity and realize accurate gravitational wave astronomy.

Professor Stuart Reid, head of the biomedical engineering department at Strathclyde, has been appointed co-chairman of optics for ET. He is the only UK-member of the Instrument Science Board for ET and is responsible for the mirror technology that forms the heart of the proposed infrastructure.

This is based on Strathclyde’s international leading role in the manufacture of extreme performance laser coatings, which are done in partnership with the Institute for Gravitational Research at the University of Glasgow and affiliated partners in the West of Scotland.

Black holes

Professor Reid said: “Future gravity-wave observatories such as the proposed ET mean that researchers can detect more mergers of black holes and neutron stars, allowing us to detect the expansion of the universe and observe entirely new phenomena Allow to do. Unique triangular shape. Will provide more information than astrological signs, better point sources to the sky, and enhance scientific understanding of the matter by testing Einstein’s theory of gravitation in strong gravitational fields.

The Forum plays an important role in policy-making on research infrastructure in Europe and the design of ET has been supported by grants from the European Commission and a consortium of around 40 research institutes and universities across Europe, which have officially submitted the proposal .

Underground tunnel

The observatory would require 30 km of underground tunnels, build a triangular shape, and use lasers to measure the spread and squeeze of spacetime from large-scale and violent astrological events.

ET will work on the scientific achievements of Advanced Virgo in Europe and Advanced LIGO in America over the last five years. It began with the first direct detection of gravitational waves in September of 2015 and continued in August 2017 when gravitational waves emitted by two concomitant neutron stars were observed.

Recent observations by Advanced Virgo and Advanced LIGO, merging two stellar black holes to make the planet 142 times more massive than the Sun, announced on 2 September 2020, demonstrated the existence of such previously unknown objects in our universe.

To fully exploit the potential, a new generation of observatories is needed and ET will help scientists detect any coexistence of two intermediate-mass black holes in the entire universe and understand its evolution will help.

Two sites for the ET, which are expected to be operational by mid-2030, are being evaluated, on the borders of Belgium, Germany and the Netherlands, and in Sardinia, Italy, with hopes of a decision within the next, Euregio Mousse -Rain five years.


Scientists have lost eight billion light years of evolution of the universe


Provided by Strathclyde, University of Glasgow

Quotes: Observatory’s proposal to detect gravitational waves (2020, 15 September) retrieved 16 September 2020 from https://phys.org/news/2020-09-observatory-gravitational.html.

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