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LIGO Is Back And Busy With Identifying Gravitational Mergers Every Week

Scientists of the Laser Interferometer Gravitational-wave Observatory or popularly known as LIGO detected its first set of gravitational waves. Shortly after that multiple accounts of such phenomenon were detected which were a result of the merger of two bulk mass objects, in general known as Black holes.

Like the Cosmic Microwave Background or CMB, even GWs are relics of the past universe as these energy from the effects of the mergers of two bodies had to travel billions upon billions light years to reach at our current position. Gravitational waves were first predicted over a century ago by Einstein’s Theory of general Relativity.

Shortly after achieving initial success, LIGO was taken offline to prepare it for upgrades over its range of sophisticated equipment. This change would allow for detections to take place weekly or even more casually. After completing its upgrade by April 1st, the observatory came back online and achieves results as expected by the team, Detecting two major gravitational waves in the space of just two weeks.

By observing the source point of these waves in different wavelengths such as optical, X-ray, ultraviolet and radio. Researchers hope to gain more insights of what actually happens during the events and about the dynamics behind them.

As mentioned by a graduate in physics at Penn State, they are finding near real-time detections of these phenomena produced by two blackholes colliding. They were able to detect the first signal within just 20 seconds of its arrival to Earth. They even have an automatic alert to receive phone calls and texts when a viable candidate is identified.

With increased sensitivity in their detectors, the LIGO team hopes to find many more detections. So far, the events detected have been resulted by the merger of Black Holes or neutron stars. Scientists hope to gather more details over such event as they make their progress towards more sophisticated detections.

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