Daniel R. Stinebring, Oberlin College
Detecting Gravitational Waves with Pulsars
Physics Division Colloquium - 9 January 2009

General Relativity predicts the production of gravitational waves by massive objects undergoing acceleration. Clear but indirect evidence for their existence -- through the analysis of a binary pulsar system -- resulted in a Nobel prize for Taylor and Hulse in 1993. Now, pulsars are being employed as a far-flung detector to observe gravitational waves directly, produced, for example, by orbiting ultra-massive black holes at the centers of galaxies. I will review the fundamentals and status of this technique and show that it is complementary to Earth-based efforts such as LIGO.

ANL Physics Division Colloquium Schedule