Einstein’s Theory Proved True 100 Years Later

e1702949-cb46-4d70-b3b5-b77d17a5b11eManan Manchanda
EE Staff Writer ‘19

Albert Einstein was perhaps one of the most eminent scientists known to mankind. In 1915, Einstein published his General Theory of Relativity. Part of his theory included a phenomenon that wasn’t proved until very recently – gravitational waves.

David Reitze, the executive director of LIGO, Laser-Interferometer Gravitational-Wave Observatory, proclaimed, “We have detected gravitational waves. We did it.”

For the first time, scientists have observed “ripples” in fabric of space called gravitational waves. This was observed from a cataclysmic event in the distant universe between two black holes, one the size of 29 suns, the other the size of 36 suns. LIGO estimates that about 1.3 billion years ago, these two black holes collided at around half the speed of light, generating gravitational waves that soon made its way to the observable universe and onto our own planet.

Confirming a major theory embedded within Einstein’s’ 1915 theory of relativity, this new discovery opens an unparalleled new window into the cosmos. Gravitational waves have the potential to teach us about the origins of our universe and the nature of gravity within our solar system and beyond. Physicists have determined that these waves were created during the final fraction of a second of the merging of the two massive black holes, releasing enormous amounts of energy and creating a third spinning black hole.

The gravitational waves were detected on September 14, 2015 at 5:51 a.m., Eastern Daylight Time by both of the twin Laser Interferometer Gravitational-wave Observatory (LIGO) detectors, located in Livingston, Louisiana, and Hanford, Washington, USA.

Physicists across the globe are calling this the “holy grail of modern physics.” Gravitational waves could lead us into hundreds of other discoveries that our world has yet to ponder in the future.

 

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