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Frank_Hoenedge

ESO to announce observational first

34 posts in this topic

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preacherman76
13 hours ago, TaintlessMetals said:

The study of this and similar phenomenon will undoubtedly lead to making many of the most far reaching technologies from the realm of science fiction a reality.

How? I mean this discovery is kinda cool an all, but I don't see how it will actually benefit anyone other then folks with really big telescopes. They can now pin point explosions so far away it doesn't effect us at all. Or if it did we couldn't do anything about it anyway.

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Ozymandias
5 hours ago, RoofGardener said:

Two neutron stars collided a LONG way away. Why did this cause a gravity wave ? Surely mass was conserved and - at THAT distance - any dispersion of mass would still look like a point source. So if there was no change in overall mass, why was there a 'ripple' in gravity ?

This is not my area but I think I am correct in saying that a gravity wave is a massless entity. It is actually a consequence of the effect of massive bodies like two neutron stars and only constitutes a perturbation of space-time.

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TaintlessMetals
3 hours ago, preacherman76 said:

How? I mean this discovery is kinda cool an all, but I don't see how it will actually benefit anyone other then folks with really big telescopes. They can now pin point explosions so far away it doesn't effect us at all. Or if it did we couldn't do anything about it anyway.

It is based on the assumption that new observations made by LIGO, and others that will be operational soon as well, will lead to a better understanding of gravity in general. Thus far our understanding is rudimentary at best but new developments provided from the data recieved during theses future observations could potentially lead to some seriously remarkable technologies not to mention have the potential to lead to confirming relativity and possibly eventually producing a unifying theory tieing everything together. With this specific observation we actually witnessed the warping of the fabric of space and time. These two binary stars actually collapsed over 130 million years ago yet had the ability to warp space and time in a measurable amount all the way here, touching us 130 million light years away and 130 million years in the future.

Edited by TaintlessMetals
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taniwha
3 hours ago, TaintlessMetals said:

It is based on the assumption that new observations made by LIGO, and others that will be operational soon as well, will lead to a better understanding of gravity in general. Thus far our understanding is rudimentary at best but new developments provided from the data recieved during theses future observations could potentially lead to some seriously remarkable technologies not to mention have the potential to lead to confirming relativity and possibly eventually producing a unifying theory tieing everything together. With this specific observation we actually witnessed the warping of the fabric of space and time. These two binary stars actually collapsed over 130 million years ago yet had the ability to warp space and time in a measurable amount all the way here, touching us 130 million light years away and 130 million years in the future.

So now if we turn our telescopes 180 degrees will we see space warping as the ripples move away? 

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Calibeliever
17 hours ago, khol said:

How exactly do they pinpoint the location of the source from gravitational waves? LIGO recieves a signal but its very nature makes it more spread out?..

just my pea brain is trying to grasp.

What fantastic science! This should provide good targets for the JWST after its launch in 2019

I understand it actually took 11 hours for observatories to locate the source, in part because they had to wait for the sun to set in the Western hemisphere. LIGO has an observation arc of about 120 degrees or 20 times the width of the moon from the ground so they had an idea of where to start but the computers had to do a lot of crunching before they could nail it down*.

*source: AMA on Reddit.

Edited by Calibeliever
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Calibeliever
4 hours ago, Ozymandias said:

This is not my area but I think I am correct in saying that a gravity wave is a massless entity. It is actually a consequence of the effect of massive bodies like two neutron stars and only constitutes a perturbation of space-time.

Theoretically, gravitational waves occur constantly they are just far too small for us to ever be able to reasonably detect. It requires a tremendous (understatement) amount of released energy to generate a large enough "wave" for our current instruments to detect. The main contributor to the wave was most likely the acceleration of matter that occurred. The smaller star's matter was estimated to have been accelerated to nearly .3c and the larger to .15c at the moment of collision. 

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EBE Hybrid

This seems to imply that Gravitational waves and light travel at the same speed, or am I missing something?

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Calibeliever
15 hours ago, EBE Hybrid said:

This seems to imply that Gravitational waves and light travel at the same speed, or am I missing something?

Yup. Well, pretty darned close as far as they can tell anyway, (it's been experimentally proven to within about 1%). GR states that gravity "propagates" at the speed of light and it's probably right.

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bison
On 10/17/2017 at 0:07 AM, RoofGardener said:

A mindboggling illustration, Taniwha. I'm sure it will cause a stirr :P

OK.. joking apart... help me out here people.

Two neutron stars collided a LONG way away. Why did this cause a gravity wave ? Surely mass was conserved and - at THAT distance - any dispersion of mass would still look like a point source. So if there was no change in overall mass, why was there a 'ripple' in gravity ?

When super-massive objects spiral in toward each other at increasing speed, they distort space-time in a cyclical manner, creating gravitational waves. This was predicted by Albert Einstein's general theory of relativity, and has since been confirmed by observation. The distance between objects throughout space, is very slightly changed in a rhythmic manner. Measuring these changes in distance enables the detection of gravitational waves. Please find an article with a more detailed explanation, linked below:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gravitational_wave

Edited by bison
improved explanation
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