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More Gravitational Waves Detected

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Scientists have detected gravitational waves for a second time, caused by the collision of two black holes 14 and eight times the size of the sun.

The team, including scientists from The Australian National University, The University of Western Australia and Monash University, glimpsed the black holes orbiting each other 27 times in their last second before coalescing. The signal was 10 times longer than that of the first gravitational wave, which was announced in February this year.

The signal was detected by the two Laser Interferometer Gravitational-Wave Observatory (LIGO) detectors in the United States, said LIGO researcher Professor Susan Scott, from the ANU Research School of Physics and Engineering (RSPE). “This has cemented the age of gravitational wave astronomy,” she said “This shows data is going to flow, that will enable us to map a lot more of the Universe than we’ve seen before.”

The violent collision happened approximately 1.4 billion years ago in a distant galaxy. During the journey to Earth, the gravitational waves died down so much that they stretched the LIGO detectors only a tiny fraction of the width of a proton.
Gravitational waves are caused by violent cosmic events such as collisions between stars or black holes, or explosions such as supernovae. They were predicted by Albert Einstein in 1916, but he thought they would be...

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