Cyprus Mail
Americas Europe Tech & Science

Gravitational wave pioneers win 2017 Nobel Physics Prize

Dr Rainer Weiss, emeritus professor of physics at MIT, uses a visual aide during a news conference to discuss the detection of gravitational waves, ripples in space and time hypothesized by physicist Albert Einstein a century ago, in Washington

US scientists Rainer Weiss, Barry Barish and Kip Thorne won the 2017 Nobel Prize for Physics for their pioneering role in the detection of gravitational waves, prize organisers said on Tuesday.

Ripples in the fabric of space-time first predicted a century ago by Albert Einstein, gravitational waves sparked a revolution in astrophysics when their first detection was announced early last year.

The teams involved in the discovery quickly emerged as favourites for Tuesday’s prize.

“This is something completely new and different, opening up unseen worlds,” the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences said in a statement announcing the winners of the 9 million Swedish crown ($1.1m) award.

“A wealth of discoveries awaits those who succeed in capturing the waves and interpreting their message.”

Triggered when super-dense black holes merge, the waves were detected using laser beams at the Laser Interferometer Gravitational-Wave Observatory (LIGO).

“The signal was extremely weak when it reached Earth, but is already promising a revolution in astrophysics,” the Academy said.

Physics is the second of this year’s crop of Nobel Prizes and comes after Americans Jeffrey Hall, Michael Rosbash and Michael Young were awarded the Nobel Prize for Physiology or Medicine on Monday.

The prizes for achievements in science, literature and peace were first awarded in 1901 in accordance with the will of Swedish business tycoon Alfred Nobel, who bequeathed much of the fortune he generated from his discovery of dynamite.

Among the science prizes, physics has often taken centre stage with laureates including scientific super stars such as Einstein, Niels Bohr and Marie Curie, one of only two women to win a Nobel Prize for Physics.

Weiss won half the prize with Barish and Thorne sharing the other half.



Related posts

After 4.2 million Covid-19 cases in November, US pins hope on vaccine

Reuters News Service

Two killed, several injured by car in pedestrian zone in German town (updated)

Reuters News Service

Elderly Swedish woman accused of imprisoning son for decades

Reuters News Service

Brexit is still stuck while Gove admits no-deal is a distinct possibility

Reuters News Service

Pinterest moving towards online events feature

Kyriacos Nicolaou

New California stay-home order weighed as hospitalizations surge

Reuters News Service

3 comments

Comments are closed.