Gravitational waves: breakthrough discovery after two centuries of expectation

Scientists just confirmed the detection of gravitational waves. This is one of the biggest discoveries of modern science.

Albert Einstein is one of my heroes, so I’ve been following this announcement closely. Einstein first predicted gravitational waves 100 years ago in his Theory of General Relativity. Gravitational waves are ripples in the fabric of space-time created by the movement of mass. These are mostly too small to be detected, so we need to look for waves that begin with massive events like the Big Bang, the collapse of stars and the collision of black holes.

By analyzing the information contained in gravitational waves, we can now open up an entirely new view of the cosmos — potentially shedding light on the very earliest moments of the universe, as well as the creation and growth of black holes.

It’s inspiring to think about all the lives and effort, generation after generation, that have gone into uncovering this insight about our universe. Today’s breakthrough depended on the talent of brilliant scientists and engineers from many nations, but also advances in computing that only recently became possible. Congratulations to everyone who helped make this happen. You’ve made Einstein proud.


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