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Gravitational Waves

2023 JUL 6

Preliminary   > Geography   >   Cosmology   >   Cosmology

Why in news?

  • Scientists have found evidence suggesting the presence of a continuous background of gravitational waves in the universe.

More about the news:

  • Scientists have discovered a ‘background hum’ rumbling throughout the universe. It confirms the presence of low-frequency (long-wavelengths) gravitational waves, thought to be constantly rolling through space noise.
  • India’s Giant Metre wave Radio Telescope (GMRT, Pune) was among the world’s six large telescopes that played a vital role in providing evidence. The other 5 are located in Germany, the UK, France, Italy and the Netherlands.

About Gravitational Waves:

  • Gravitational waves are ripples in the fabric of space-time produced by a few of the universe’s largest and most dynamic processes.
  • They are invisible; however, they move incredibly fast.
  • They move at the speed of light. These waves shrink and expand anything in their way as they pass by.
  • They were detected by the Laser-Interferometer Gravitational-Wave Observatory (LIGO) and the observed waves were caused by the merger of two black holes at a distance of more than a billion light-years from Earth.

Causes of Gravitational Waves

  • The strongest gravitational wave is produced when objects move at greater speeds. Few examples of instances where a gravitational wave can take place are:
    • When a star bursts asymmetrically.
    • When two huge stars orbit each other.
  • When two black holes go around each other and unite.


Which of the following statements is correct?

1. Gravitational waves were predicted by Albert Einstein in 1916 on the basis of his theory of General Relativity

2. Gravitational Waves are to be detected by very sensitive detectors known as Interferometes

Select the correct answer using the code given below:

(a) 1 only

(b) 2 only

(c) Both 1 and 2

(d) Neither 1 nor 2