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Australia's part in the global effort to discover gravitational waves

The historic discovery of gravitational waves announced this week involved the work of more than a thousand scientists working tirelessly in several different institutions, across many different countries and timezones.


Originally published in The Conversation.

Timeline: the history of gravity

Wes Mountain/The Conversation, CC BY-ND

Our understanding of gravity has gone through a few permutations, from Newton’s equations through to Einstein’s general relativity.


Originally published in The Conversation.

On detecting gravitational waves, landmark science and the media

BH LMC APOD

A few hours ago the most eagerly-awaited press conference in physics this century was held in the US by the LIGO Scientific Collaboration (LSC). It was widely anticipated that the consortium would announce the first direct detection of gravitational waves with the Advanced LIGO interferometers - and they did!!!


Originally published in The Conversation.

Gravitational waves discovered: top scientists respond

Massive bodies can send ripples through space time in the form of gravitational waves. NASA

One hundred years ago, Albert Einstein published his general theory of relativity, w


Originally published in The Conversation.

Gravitational waves discovered: the universe has spoken

When two black holes collide, the resulting gravitational ripples can be felt across the cosmos. Henze, NASA

Up until now, humanity has been deaf to the gravitational “sounds” of the universe. At last, we have heard our first message. On September 14, 2015, the first data arrived!


Originally published in The Conversation.

When black holes meet: inside the cataclysms that cause gravitational waves

Binary black holes come in a variety of forms, but they are all astounding. NASA, ESA, and G.


Originally published in The Conversation.

Blending science, art and other excrement

Photo Credit: MONA/Rémi Chauvin Image Courtesy MONA Museum of Old and New Art, Hobart, Tasmania, Australia, CC BY

I think it’s fair to say that I am fairly experienced in dealing with excrement. While some of this comes with


Originally published in The Conversation.

An international day to encourage more women and girls in science

Plenty more needs doing to help plug the gender gap in science. Shutterstock/kurhan

The first United Nations International Day of Women and Girls in Science is being celebrated today, with a number of The Conversation.

Opposition to genetically modified animals could leave millions hungry

A few genetic tweaks can solve a lot of problems. Chris Marchant/Flickr, CC BY

In a world with a ballooning population and deteriorating environment, we will need to use every trick in the book to stave off mass starvation, disease and politi


Originally published in The Conversation.