Over 50 Candidate Black Hole and Neutron Star Collision Gravity Wave Detections

The gravity wave detections were in 2015 when Laser Interferometer Gravitational-Wave Observatory (LIGO) researchers detected the impact of two black holes.

On October 1st, LIGO’s Hanford (LHO) and Livingston (LLO) detectors will temporarily halt observations to undergo a series of instrument upgrades and fixes. This kind of “commissioning break” sometimes occurs during LIGO’s long observing runs. The current run, O3, began on April 1 2019, when Virgo, the European-based gravitational-wave detector, located at the European Gravitational Observatory (EGO) in Italy, also started observing. Virgo is also pausing this month to perform upgrades that will improve their sensitivity and their uptime. All three detectors will resume operations on November 1st.

By July 31st, 2019, LIGO had sent out 25 alerts to possible detections, three have since been retracted, leaving us with 22 ‘candidate’ gravitational wave events. We call them “candidates” because we still need time to vet all of them. If all candidates are verified, then the number of detections made by LIGO in just the first third of O3 will double the number of detections made in its first two runs combined.

The third run has about 32 candidate gravitational wave events.

Halfway through LIGO’s O3 observing run there were over thirty BH-BH merger detections and a handful of NS-NS events.

Black Hole Colliding With and Devouring a Neutron Star

Three gravity wave detectors in the United States and Italy detected a pulse of gravitational waves—ripples in space itself—apparently set off when a black hole and a neutron star spiraled into each other about 900 million light-years away. Observers had previously spotted numerous mergers of black holes and one merger of neutron stars, but never a combination. The new find could give new insights into neutron stars, which are made of the densest matter in the cosmos.

“This is a huge milestone—if it stands up,” says Patrick Brady, spokesperson for the more than 1300 scientists working with the Laser Interferometer Gravitational-Wave Observatory (LIGO), which has twin detectors in Hanford, Washington, and Livingston, Louisiana. The new observation was made by LIGO and Virgo, a gravitational wave detector near Pisa, Italy, which itself hosts more than 400 scientists.

Three Black Holes Collision Course

Astronomers working with data from the space-based Chandra X-ray Observatory said this week (September 25, 2019) that they’ve located three supermassive black holes on a collision course.

16 thoughts on “Over 50 Candidate Black Hole and Neutron Star Collision Gravity Wave Detections”

  1. Ok. You are at least open and honest about it. I rather think that were this 1519 or so, our opinions would be that Man should Definitely be Exploring the New World, to take it over and make it ours. Ahem. 

    Which is what we did. 
    And it turned out (for us) pretty well, all in all. 
    Not so for the “Red Man”. 

    Yet, comparing those ideals to the life we now live, the technologies-unthinkable that we now gift our kids for birthdays and holidays, that we now THROW AWAY every couple of years … well, it seems obvious that the next 500 years will have a LOT of changes coming. 

    Just Saying,
    GoatGuy ✓

  2. My primary interest is to see humans go interplanetary and eventually interstellar. I oppose anything which hampers that sacred objective. Green New Deal socialists are a threat. Any ideology that rejects technology and embraces societal devolution is heretical.
    What I want right now is NTP bimodal reactors available to favored private-sector partners.
    And Space Law.

  3. I avoid unnecessary climate arguments, and so- Intentionally vague. It boots little to argue with zealots. Climate will change. We can easily adapt. Day after tomorrow BS is alarmist propaganda. Eventually we’re gonna need to make room for Canadians. Soon, I think (Decades to Centuries).
    But more importantly- we need to take advantage of this break in global mischief and concentrate on providing tools for expansion into space. Our seed should be scattered broadly amoung the cosmos. Malthusians be damned.

  4. Fair enough. 

    I like most of the various sects and branches of Christianity: they espouse mutually beneficent fraternity — among believers and those not-so-inspired-by-canon. ‘Extreme’ religion (and much of the various neo-ecological cults) are largely totalitarians-without-real-answers. 

    You MUST believe, 
    you MUST tithe, 
    you MUST confess, 
    you MUST proselytize, 
    you MUST do this that and the other thing. 

    This, in the face of problems connecting the bag of dots. 

    That without imposing substantial hardship on humanity-at-present, there is no meaningful reduction in the greenhouse gasses that are causing the uproar. That all action that isn’t substantial, hard, harmful and total … is just a banal good-feeling self-righteous load of bbb-bb-b-bûllsnot. 

    IF we believe that adding 20 or 30 or 50 or whatever billion-tons-of-CO₂ per year is harmful to the point of human existence, then what is the OBVIOUS thing to do? 

    Blow up the oil rigs, tear down the refineries, super-über-tax the remaining product, close the coal mines, for sure, and go to war with all countries that refuse to take the extreme, but likely totally effective cold-turkey approach. 

    NO ONE will like it. Billions will starve. These are certainties. But it is also certain that with billions fewer humans, the Mother Earth will start to repair herself. 


    Just saying,
    GoatGuy ✓

  5. GG, if you’re Catholic — as opposed to raised Catholic — it would help not to compare the Church to the AGW cult. We have enough trouble fighting misconceptions born from the caricaturing of the Church made by non-Catholics; the ones made by Catholics are the sort of problem we could do without.

  6. I want to fix climate models so as to undermine the AGW fraud. I happen to believe that we are nearly at the point where good models are becoming possible. I have no objection with people spending their own money on fruitless endeavors, but I will resist their efforts to leverage my treasure in financing the next fusion fad or satellite farm.

  7. Fix climate models, huh?

    Is that going to cut Humanity’s burning of fossil fuels, production of CO₂? No?
    Is it going prepare Humanity for oppressive taxation, to quash CO₂ output? No?

    The religion of Climate Change dictates that we prostrate ourselves before the Altar of Renewable Energy, to save our souls from eternal damnation. OK … being Catholic, I’ve heard that one before, different garments and beads.  

    We put billions into all sorts of things, ClueBat. 

    Billions into making video games;
    Billions into rounded corners on cell phones. 
    Billions into defending brands such as Bandaid. 
    Billions on making then sorting out millions of tons of packaging plastics. 
    Billions in shipping shît all over the world.
    Billions to educate the un-educatable with special programs that almost universally fail to achieve lofty mission statements. 
    Billions on made-to-order coffee, four-bucks-a-shot, three-times-a-day. 
    Billions on S-T-U-P-I-D stuff. Inane. Pointless. Corrosive. Cute. Banal.

    No, if ‘they’ want to spend hundreds of millions of someone’s money on LIGO2 and 3 and 4 and 5, well good for ‘them’. Way better than spending 10× or 100× that sum on the next-next-next-little-yawn of a smart phone.  

    Just saying,
    GoatGuy ✓

  8. Sorry Doc, but I believe that we should be directing billions of dollars to monetizing space and protecting the species on earth first. We can map collisions later. The science is amazing, but research is a zero sum game.

  9. The thing about scientific research is that it’s very difficult to predict what will turn out to be useful or not.

    “No ROI” was probably a complaint levelled at subatomic physics in the 1930s. Or aircraft inventors in the 1890s. Or people doing factorisation of large numbers in the 1960s. Or playing around with magnets and coils in the 1820s. Or using multimillion dollar computer systems to send a simple text message as a substitute for a simple telephone call in the early 1980s…

  10. I wonder at which instrument size it will be cheaper to put it in space.
    Size matters in this case and a million kilometer interferometer floating in space would probably be nice to have.

  11. I see very little ROI.
    Although the data is interesting, we should be investing in NEA tracking and fixing our climate models. Near-term priorities.

  12. I guess this is what it was like when the first radio telescopes, or even just first telescopes, were made.

    All of a sudden new discoveries every couple of weeks.

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