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gravitational waves

astrophysics

Colliding Black Holes Tell New Story of Stars

September 6, 2016

Just months after their discovery, gravitational waves coming from the mergers of black holes are shaking up astrophysics.

Q&A

Mining Black Hole Collisions for New Physics

July 21, 2016

The physicist Asimina Arvanitaki is thinking up ways to search gravitational wave data for evidence of dark matter particles orbiting black holes.

Abstractions blog

LIGO Reports Second Black-Hole Merger

June 15, 2016

The spokesperson for the Laser Interferometer Gravitational-Wave Observatory called it “a promising start to mapping the populations of black holes in our universe.”

astrophysics

After Black Holes Collide, a Puzzling Flash

March 2, 2016

A satellite spotted a burst of light just as gravitational waves rolled in from the collision of two black holes. Was the flash a cosmic coincidence, or do astrophysicists need to rethink what black holes can do?

Q&A

From Einstein’s Theory to Gravity’s Chirp

February 18, 2016

The path from a revolutionary set of equations to the detection of gravitational waves was strewn with obstacles and controversy, explains the physicist Daniel Kennefick — and the struggle continues.

astrophysics

Gravitational Waves Discovered at Long Last

February 11, 2016

Ripples in space-time have been detected a century after Einstein predicted them, launching a new era in astronomy.

Q&A

Searching the Sky for the Wobbles of Gravity

October 22, 2015

The physicist Gabriela González is on the cusp of finding the first direct evidence of gravitational waves — soundlike wobbles in space-time produced by black holes and their kin.

cosmology

Joint Dust Analysis Deflates Big Bang Signal

January 30, 2015

No definitive evidence for cosmic inflation is found, but support remains strong for the theory even as critics highlight its shortcomings as an explanation for how and why the universe began.

BICEP2 graphic.
cosmology

‘Big Bang Signal’ Could All Be Dust

September 21, 2014

Cosmic dust in the high latitudes of the Milky Way could account for the entire swirl pattern that had been presented as proof of a leading Big Bang theory, according to a new data analysis from the Planck satellite.