Scientists said Thursday they have detected the existence of gravitational waves, which were predicted by Albert Einstein’s theory of general relativity 100 years ago.
The detected gravitational waves were produced during the final fraction of a second of the merger of two black holes to produce a single, more massive spinning black hole, they said at a news conference in Washington, D.C.
The gravitational waves were detected on Sept. 14, 2015, at 5:51 a.m. EDT (0951 GMT) by both of the twin Laser Interferometer Gravitational-wave Observatory (LIGO) detectors, located in Livingston, Louisiana, and Hanford, Washington.
Based on the observed signals, LIGO scientists estimated that the black holes for this event were about 29 and 36 times the mass of the sun, and the event took place 1.3 billion years ago.
About three times the mass of the Sun was converted into gravitational waves in a fraction of a second — with a peak power output about 50 times that of the whole visible universe. (PNA/Xinhua)