December 8, 2016

Penn Museum
Widener Lecture Room
  • Alessandra Buonanno

    Director at Max Planck Institute for Gravitational Physics; Head of the Division Astrophysical and Cosmological Relativity

Sounds of Silent: Listening to the Universe with Gravitational Waves

Women in Physics Public Lecture

Co-hosted by the Department of Physics & Astronomy

One hundred years after Einstein predicted the existence of gravitational waves on the basis of his theory of General Relativity, LIGO announced the first observation of gravitational waves passing through the Earth emitted by the collision of two black holes one billion three-hundred million light years away. The detection of gravitational waves constitutes a major scientific discovery, as it permits a new kind of observation of the cosmos, quite different from electromagnetic and particle observations. In this lecture Professor Buonanno will review experimental and theoretical aspects of the quest for gravitational waves, which culminated with the recent discovery by LIGO,  and discuss how those new astronomical messengers can unveil the properties of the most extreme astrophysical objects in the universe.

For more information, please visit the Department of Physics and Astronomy website: