Beyond Black Holes: Could LIGO Have Detected Merging Neutron Stars For The First Time? (Synopsis)

“Presently thought to be the most powerful explosions in nature… their sources have only recently been localized by observations of associated afterglows in X-rays, visible light, and radio waves, delayed in that order.” -Richard Matzner, on the dictionary entry for Gamma Ray Burst It seems like an eternity ago, but it’s been under two years … Read more

America’s Previous Coast-To-Coast Eclipse Almost Proved Einstein Right (Synopsis)

“Astronomers are greatly disappointed when, having traveled halfway around the world to see an eclipse, clouds prevent a sight of it; and yet a sense of relief accompanies the disappointment.” –Simon Newcomb On August 21st, a total solar eclipse will travel coast-to-coast across the United States, bringing darkness during the day to portions of 14 … Read more

Ripples In Spacetime: From Einstein To LIGO And Beyond (Synopsis)

“The years of searching in the dark for a truth that one feels but cannot express, the intense desire and the alternations of confidence and misgiving until one breaks through to clarity and understanding, are only known to him who has himself experienced them.” -Albert Einstein In 2015, for the very first time, gravitational waves … Read more

How a solar eclipse first proved Einstein right (Synopsis)

“Eddington had needed to make significant corrections to some of the measurements, for various technical reasons, and in the end decided to leave some of the Sobral data out of the calculation entirely. Many scientists were suspicious that he had cooked the books. Although the suspicion lingered for years in some quarters, in the end … Read more

LIGO’s Successor Approved; Will Discover Incredible New Sources Of Gravitational Waves (Synopsis)

“Einstein’s gravitational theory, which is said to be the greatest single achievement of theoretical physics, resulted in beautiful relations connecting gravitational phenomena with the geometry of space; this was an exciting idea.” -Richard Feynman There’s no doubt that LIGO has given us one of the most incredible breakthroughs of the 21st century: the direct detection … Read more

Was It All Just Noise? Independent Analysis Casts Doubt On LIGO’s Detections (Synopsis)

“What’s really exciting is what comes next. I think we’re opening a window on the universe — a window of gravitational wave astronomy.” -Dave Reitze, executive director of LIGO It revolutionized our view of the Universe when the LIGO annoucements – and we’re up to three, now – came out. They indicated the direct detection … Read more