Latest Max Planck Institute for Gravitational Physics Stories

Heart Of Space Mission LISA Pathfinder Successfully Tested, Ready For Launch
2013-06-05 14:13:03

Max Planck Institute for Gravitational Physics The optical bench of the LISA Pathfinder (LPF) mission passed with flying colors extensive testing at the Institute for Gravitational Research (IGR) at the University of Glasgow. IGR scientists assured that the high-precision measurement system is ready to survive tremendous forces up to 35 g (35 times the gravitational acceleration on Earth) during rocket launch. “With the successful tests we reached an important milestone. The...

Squeezed Laser Will Bring Gravitational Waves To The Light Of Day
2011-09-12 06:34:03

  Measuring at the limits of the laws of nature — this is the challenge which researchers repeatedly take up in their search for gravitational waves. The interferometers they use here measure with such sensitivity that a particular quantum phenomenon of light — shot noise — limits the measuring accuracy. With the "squeezed light" method scientists from the Max Planck Society and the Leibniz University Hannover likewise use quantum physics in a countermove in order to...

2011-05-27 13:06:07

The final piece of Einstein's jigsaw Direct evidence of the existence of gravitational waves is something that has long eluded researchers, however new research has suggested that adding just one of the proposed detectors in Japan, Australia and India will drastically increase the expected rate of detection. In a study published today, Friday, 27 May, in IOP Publishing's journal Classical and Quantum Gravity, Professor Bernard Schutz, of the Albert Einstein Institute, Germany, demonstrated...

2010-08-18 18:49:22

The National Research Council (NRC) has strongly recommended the Laser Interferometer Space Antenna (LISA) as one of NASA's next two major space missions, to start in 2016 in collaboration with the European Space Agency (ESA). LISA will study the universe in a manner different from any other space observatory, by observing gravitational waves. The recommendation was announced August 13 in a press conference at the Keck Center of the National Academies in Washington, D.C. In the just-concluded...

2010-08-13 06:55:00

Idle computers are the astronomers' playground: Three citizen scientists "“ a German and an American couple "“ have discovered a new radio pulsar hidden in data gathered by the Arecibo Observatory. This is the first deep-space discovery by Einstein@Home, which uses donated time from the home and office computers of 250,000 volunteers from 192 different countries. (Science Express, Aug. 12, 2010.)The citizens credited with the discovery are Chris and Helen Colvin, of Ames, Iowa and...

2008-12-19 16:15:00

In a move that would have any astrophysicist scratching his head, the U.S. Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA) commissioned a report to assess whether gravitational waves could threaten national security. The JASON Defense Advisory Group was also asked to investigate other potential applications for high-frequency gravitational waves, such as imaging the Earth's core or uses in telecommunications. Gravitational waves are wrinkles in space-time caused by the movement of objects with...

2008-04-17 07:00:00

The U.S. Laser Interferometer Gravitational-wave Observatories (LIGO) is getting a $205 million upgrade by the National Science Foundation (NSF). Dubbed the "Advanced LIGO Project", the upgrade will enable the new field of gravitational wave astronomy. The National Science Board approved the seven-year project in its March 27 meeting, and the  NSF will provide an initial $32.75 million in funding this year via the Major Research Equipment and Facilities Construction (MREFC) budget...

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