The three pioneers of LIGO experiment- Rainer Weiss from MIT, Barry Barish from Caltech and Kip Thorne from Caltech are the first ones to be able to directly detect the gravitational waves. The cosmic vibrations made by the swirling black holes have entranced everyone in the community including the Nobel Prize community members.
The three will share the 9 million Swedish Kronor that account for $1.1 million cash prize. Fifty percent of the reward will go to Weiss while Throne and Barish are going to split twenty-five percent each. The monumental discovery of gravitational waves has made them win a Nobel Prize in physics.
In was back in 2016 Feb when the three had spotted gravitational waves produced by the swirling black holes at Laser Interferometer Gravitational-Wave Observatory (LIGO). The discovery was made into a front-page headline. It has even been two years since then that they have got the fruits of their labour.
The spotting of the gravitational waves even provided evidence for Einstein’s general law of relativity. Albert Einstein had predicted that when two rapidly accelerating enormous objects tend to stretch out and squeeze spacetime, they create the ripples that move out from the source. At last, the words of Albert Einstein have been proven to be accurate and correct.
The team effort made the discovery possible. This discovery is set to change the path of astronomy in general. Now, the scientists would survey the universe by trying to look out for the tremors. LIGO had been unsuccessful in finding gravitational waves until 2010. The advanced detectors and upgrades to the instruments made it possible for the detection of minute undulations of collision between black holes.
THE END STORY
The black holes made quivers which were translated into an audio single producing a ‘chirp’ sound. Ever since the first discovery, the scientists kept on discovering new evidence for the existence of gravitational waves. LIGO’s upgraded instruments are extremely efficient in their work.
LIGO has been making new progress with collaboration with Virgo detector in August. Weiss was responsible for making the blueprint for LIGO. The Nobel Prize for their efforts is well deserved.