Nobel prize in physics awarded for discovery of gravitational waves

Nobel Prize

Nobel Prize

110 Nobel prize for physics was awarded in 1901 to 2016, among them only two were women. One half was awarded to Rainer Weiss of Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) and the other half jointly to Barry C. Barish and Kip S. Thorne - both from California Institute of Technology (Caltech).

Kip S. Thorne, born 1940 in Logan, UT, USA. Ph.D.

The leading effort of the 2017 Nobel laureates in developing the Laser Interferometer Gravitational-Wave Observatory (LIGO) made observing the gravitational waves possible. Nobel Prizes are not awarded posthumously.

Dr Brian Bowsher, chief executive of the UK's Science and Technology Facilities Council, said: "The award of the Nobel today is a celebration of the genius of a vast team of people, including many UK-based scientists and engineers, and it is something everyone in the United Kingdom can share in". The only thing left would be vibrations in the light itself that, if Einstein's general theory of relativity could be trusted, had to be caused by cataclysmic physical shifts in spacetime (or gravitational waves). "They are always created when a mass accelerates, like when an ice-skater pirouettes or a pair of black holes rotate around each other", the Nobel jury explained.

The discovery was made using the sensitive instruments of LIGO, in which NSF invested $1.1 billion. But in 2015, the tiny signals, which are easily swamped by numerous sources of noise, were detected for the first time by LIGO's enormous and ultrasensitive interferometers.

"The beam must hit the mirrors precisely". Each of the four detections has been the result of the merger of black holes, but scientists expect to soon capture waves emanating from supernovae (exploding stars) and the merger of neutron stars. "This is just the beginning of a new roller-coaster exploration of the universe", said Alberto Vecchio of the University of Birmingham's Institute of Gravitational Wave Astronomy.

Ariel Goobar of the Royal Academy said the winners' work meant "we can study processes which were completely impossible, out of reach to us in the past".

Barry Barish, who shared the Nobel Prize, called the achievement "a win for Einstein, and a very big one".

Who has received the 2017 Nobel Prize for Physics? Those prizes may be almost as rich or even richer in terms of dollars and cents, but for better or worse, the Nobel nevertheless serves as the apex of scientific recognition.

Artist impression of two colliding white dwarfs and gravitational waves. However, since over a thousand scientists, researchers and technicians worked at the LIGO Scientific Collaboration, it wasn't exactly clear which people will receive the prize. "This discovery has been groundbreaking because it's not the end of the path; we've really opened the door to new discovery". Professor. "LIGO's history-making work has given us new insight into our universe".

"The first ever observation of a gravitational wave was a milestone - a window on the Universe", said Olga Botner, from the Academy, speaking at the Conference.

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