Thursday, August 10, 2017


Article Written By: Kyle Tam


 Researchers at the University of California, Irvine have undergone an analysis of LIGO's recent discovery of gravitational waves and have concluded that there could be up to 100 million black holes in the Milky Way.
 Back in 2015, the Laser Interferometer Gravitational-Wave Observatory (LIGO) detected gravitational waves created by the collision of two 30-solar-mass black holes. At the time scientists hadn't considered it, but black holes are more likely to be around the same mass as our sun.
 "But then we looked closer at the astrophysics of the actual result, a merger of two 30-solar-mass black holes," said James Bullock, chair and professor of physics and astronomy at UC Irvine. "That was simply astounding and had us asking, ‘How common are black holes of this size, and how often do they merge?"
 It turned out that this number was huge. Furthermore, it was determined that only a small number of these mergers were required to take place to produce waves like the ones LIGO observed - around 0.1%-1%. In other words, researchers could be detecting a lot more gravitational waves in the future, and in turn, this will help propel scientists to understanding the elusive phenomenon of black holes.
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