The Space & Beyond Blog

The most epic waves in the universe

Unlike other waves in the universe, gravitational waves allow for the observation of black hole mergers

Blue and green waves rippling outward with two light blue spheres in the middle.

An artist’s impression of gravitational waves generated by binary neutron stars. Source: R. Hurt/Caltech-JPL

A starry brown sky with two black circles gravitating toward each other in the middle.

An artist’s impression of two black holes merging. SOURCE: SXS

A bird’s eye view of LIGO, which has two large physics observatories with two beam lines extending out of the observatories.

LIGO is made up of two observatories: one in Louisiana and one in Washington (above). Each observatory has two long “arms” that are each more than 2 miles (4 kilometers) long. SOURCE:  Caltech/MIT/LIGO Lab

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