Colloquium

Observation of gravitational waves from a binary black hole merger by LIGO

Fri, 04 Mar 2016
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Colloquium
 
M. Landry
LIGO and Virgo Scientific Collaborations LIGO Hanford Observatory/Caltech
 
Observation of gravitational waves from a binary black hole merger by LIGO
 
Mar 04, 2016
 

Synopsis

On Sep 14, 2015, the two interferometric detectors of the Laser Interferometer
Gravitational Wave Observatory (LIGO) detected gravitational waves from a
binary black hole system. Denoted GW150914, the signal swept in frequency from
35Hz to 250Hz, and had a peak gravitational-wave strain of 1.0e-21.  This is
the first direct detection of gravitational waves and the first observation of
a binary black hole merger.

In this talk we will review elements of LIGO in the context of the detection :
gravitational waves and sources, the status of the second-generation interferometric
detectors, and the first observing run of Advanced LIGO, O1. We discuss the
detection of the binary black hole system, and some of the physics-archive and astrophysics-archive
conclusions that are drawn from the data. We close with an outlook on the future.