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Location of gravitational wave signals identified for 1st time

Location of gravitational wave signals identified for 1st time

Posted October. 17, 2017 07:23,   

Updated October. 17, 2017 08:14


A joint international research team has yielded a scientific breakthrough by detecting gravitational wave signals from collision of two neutron stars. The researchers also identified the location of collision by successfully observing high-energy rays including gamma radiations.

The Korea Astronomy and Space Science Institute (KASI) announced on Monday that the location where gravitational waves are generated has been detected for the first time through a concerted research effort by some 3,000 scientists across 45 countries in the world. As many as 38 South Korean researchers participated in the research project from various groups such as the Korean Gravitational Wave Group, KASI, the Department of Physics and Astronomy of Seoul National University and the Space Science Research Institute of Sungkyunkwan University.

LIGO and Virgo, an American and an Italian observatory, first detected gravitational wave signals at 9:41 p.m. on August 17. This marked the fifth observation of gravitational waves by humans. The waves were more elusive for detection as they were generated from collisions of small-sized neutron stars, not the usual crash of black holes. Named after the date of observation, the phenomenon is called “GK170817.”

After the detection of gravitational wave signals, high energy rays were also identified including gamma, visible and ultraviolet rays. The additional information allowed the joint research group to identify the exact location of the collision, which was found to have occurred in NGC 4993, a galaxy 130 million light years away from the earth.

The research findings were compiled into seven theses and simultaneously published on Monday in the Nature, the Astrophysical Journal Letters as well as the Physical Review Letters.