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RESCHEDULED to 5 April

Talk by Prof. Martin Hendry. This talk may be given remotely by the speaker: TBC

Gravitational waves are ripples in the fabric of the cosmos predicted by Albert Einstein more than 100 years ago and produced by some of the most extreme phenomena in the universe: exploding stars, colliding black holes, even the Big Bang itself. To detect them has required the construction of the most sensitive scientific instruments ever built: giant laser interferometers capable of measuring tiny changes in the curvature of space, less than a millionth millionth the width of a hair. Such technology may sound like science fiction, yet these remarkable instruments are now routinely detecting the spacetime ripples from colliding black holes billions of light years from the Earth.

Join University of Glasgow scientist and “black hole hunter” Professor Martin Hendry for a whistle-stop tour through the exciting new field of gravitational-wave astronomy: the ground-breaking discoveries that Martin and his colleagues are making, the remarkable engineering and technology that has enabled them, and how they are helping us to tackle some of the biggest mysteries of Einstein’s universe.

 

Martin Hendry is Professor of Gravitational Astrophysics and Cosmology at the University of Glasgow, where he is also Clerk of Senate and Vice Principal of the University. He is a senior member of the LIGO Scientific Collaboration: the global team of more than 1500 scientists who, with their colleagues in the Virgo Collaboration, made the first ever detection of gravitational waves – a discovery awarded the 2017 Nobel Prize for Physics. Martin is a Fellow of the Institute of Physics and is also a Fellow (and currently Vice-President) of the Royal Society of Edinburgh – Scotland’s National Academy. He is a passionate advocate for science education and communication and in 2015 he was awarded the MBE for services to the public understanding of science.

Image Credit: R. Hurt/Caltech-JPL