Science, don’t you just love it. This time scientists have found out “something” that is being labelled as the greatest discovery this century. Sure, we’re only 16 years in, but it’s still pretty exciting.
The Laser Interferometer Gravitational-Wave Observatory (LIGO) in the US has detected gravitational waves for the first time. It was predicted by Einstein nearly 100 years ago, and they believe it will enable them to peer into unknown realms of the Universe.
It all came about as the result of two black holes colliding a mere 1.5 billion light years away. The collision created colossal amounts of energy, which sent shock waves through space.
Here’s a helpful video explaining more about what gravitational waves are.
Two observatories both caught the sub-atomic movements at the same time. The discovery will allow astronomers to witness the interactions between massive objects in space on a regular basis, and it could provide answers that explain scientific phenomena as far back as the Big Bang – 13.7 billion years ago.
This video explains why it “changes everything”
Stephen Hawking told the BBC:
“Gravitational waves provide a completely new way at looking at the Universe. The ability to detect them has the potential to revolutionise astronomy. This discovery is the first detection of a black hole binary system and the first observation of black holes merging,” he said.
“Apart from testing (Albert Einstein’s theory of) General Relativity, we could hope to see black holes through the history of the Universe. We may even see relics of the very early Universe during the Big Bang at some of the most extreme energies possible.”