View Full Version : Black Hole Mergers

2006-Apr-14, 12:14 PM
NASA will hold a media teleconference 18:00 GMT (1 p.m. EDT) Tuesday, April 18, to announce a breakthrough in simulating black hole mergers and predicting their gravitational wave signatures.
The finding is based on the largest astrophysical calculation ever performed by a NASA supercomputer.

Web link: (http://www.nasa.gov/centers/goddard/universe/gwave.html) (on April 18th)

2006-Apr-14, 01:02 PM
Thanks Blob. This should be an interesting talk. I look forward to seeing the animations, and hearing the descriptions of how the gravity waves could possibly be detected.

2006-Apr-14, 01:25 PM
Interestingly, there is a new paper about the Parkes Pulsar Timing Array.

Title: The Parkes Pulsar Timing Array
Authors: R N Manchester

Given sufficient sensitivity, pulsar timing observations can make a direct detection of gravitational waves passing over the Earth. Pulsar timing is most sensitive to gravitational waves with frequencies in the nanoHertz region, with the most likely astronomical sources being binary super-massive black holes in galaxy cores.
The Parkes Pulsar Timing Array project uses the Parkes 64-m radio telescope to make precision timing observations of a sample of about 20 millisecond pulsars with a principal goal of making a direct detection of gravitational waves. Observations commenced about one year ago and so far sub-microsecond timing residuals have been achieved for more than half of these pulsars.
New receiver and software systems are being developed with the aim of reducing these residuals to the level believed necessary for a positive detection of gravitational waves.
Galactic disk MSPs with periods less than 20 ms plotted in celestial coordinates. The size of the circle is inversely related to the pulsar period and for stronger pulsars the circle is filled. The dashed line is the northern declination limit of the Parkes telescope. Pulsars chosen for the PPTA are marked by a star.

Read more (http://arxiv.org/PS_cache/astro-ph/pdf/0604/0604288.pdf) (PDF)