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Albert Einstein’s Century-old Prediction comes True: Third Gravitational Waves detected by Scientists

New detection of the gravitational waves is the third time that Einstein's theory is validated

Black hole. Wikimedia
  • For the third time, scientists have detected the gravitational waves validating Albert Einstein’s predictions
  • The prediction was made a century ago
  • The latest detection has strong implications on the nature of black holes and dark matter

June 04, 2017: The third set of gravitational waves has recently been detected by LIGO (Laser Interferometer Gravitational-Wave Observatory), a complex yet effective experiment to detect gravitational waves. The detection validates Albert Einstein’s theory that space compresses and stretches itself.

The prediction was made a century ago. The successful detection also holds significance for the true nature of black holes and dark matter. It puts the predicted theory to test!

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The historic moment was witnessed by the international research team, including scientists from India. The faint hum of the waves can only be heard by the cutting edge science and sensitive detection of LIGO. The wave is produced when two black holes merge together.

The latest detection is called GW170104 for which the observations began last year. Gravitational waves were first observed in September 2015 and then in December of the same year.

Black Holes merging. Wikimedia

The third waves have been detected twice as far from the Earth as the earlier two detections. The combined black hole has a mass about 49 times more than that of the sun. The merger of the two black holes can be traced back 3 billion years ago.

The waves are studied in a research paper that has received acceptance for publication by journal ‘Physical Review Letters’. IIT Madras has contributed significantly to the study. It models the gravitational waves sources and tests the consistency of signals.

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Scientists say that the new detection advances their goal of observing ancient events through waves, otherwise invisible through other means.

LIGO is based in the US. But India is working to set up its own observatory as well. India hopes to set it up by 2024. India looks to contribute to the global scientific knowledge.

– by Saksham Narula of NewsGram. Twitter: @Saksham2393

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Jupiter’s Great Red Spot grows taller: NASA

Jupiter's Great Red Spot, which has been shrinking for a century and a half, seems to be growing taller as it gets smaller

NASA to release two missions focused on moon soon in 2022. Pixabay
NASA's reveals the change in size of Jupiter's red spot. Pixabay

Jupiter’s Great Red Spot, which has been shrinking for a century and a half, seems to be growing taller as it gets smaller, NASA scientists have found.

The Great Red Spot is a persistent high-pressure region in the atmosphere of Jupiter, producing an anti-cyclonic storm 22 degree south of the planet’s equator.

Space playlist for Halloween
Jupiter’s red spot is becoming longer. Pixabay.

The findings, published in the Astronomical Journal, indicate that the Great Red Spot recently started to drift westward faster than before. Historically, it’s been assumed that this drift is more or less constant.

The study confirms that the storm has been decreasing in length overall since 1878 and is big enough to accommodate just over one Earth at this point. But the historical record indicates the area of the spot grew temporarily in the 1920s.

“Storms are dynamic, and that’s what we see with the Great Red Spot. It’s constantly changing in size and shape, and its winds shift, as well,” said Amy Simon, an expert in planetary atmospheres at NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Centre in Maryland.

Also Read: NASA Reveals Plans For Future Missions To Moon

“There is evidence in the archived observations that the Great Red Spot has grown and shrunk over time,” added Reta Beebe, Professor at New Mexico State University in Las Cruces. “However, the storm is quite small now, and it’s been a long time since it last grew,” Beebe said.

Because the storm has been contracting, the researchers expected to find the already-powerful internal winds becoming even stronger. However, instead of spinning faster, the storm appears to be forced to stretch up. The change in height is small relative to the area that the storm covers, but it’s still noticeable.

Further, the Great Red Spot’s colour is also deepening, becoming intensely orange since 2014, the researchers observed. While the researchers are not sure why that’s happening, it’s possible that the chemicals which colour the storm are being carried higher into the atmosphere as the spot stretches up.

Jupiter’s red spot is decreasing in width. NASA

At higher altitudes, the chemicals would be subjected to more UltraViolet radiation and would take on a deeper colour. Once big enough to swallow three Earths with room to spare, the mystery surrounding Great Red Spot seems to deepen as the iconic storm contracts.

Researchers do not know whether the spot will shrink a bit more and then stabilise, or break apart completely. “If the trends we see in the Great Red Spot continue, the next five to 10 years could be very interesting from a dynamical point of view,” the researchers said.

“We could see rapid changes in the storm’s physical appearance and behaviour, and maybe the red spot will end up being not so great after all,” they added. IANS