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UKRI Infrastructure Fund supports next-gen gravitational wave detectors


Seven UK universities supported by the UKRI Infrastructure Fund have launched a new consortium to advance gravitational wave research.

Seven UK universities supported by the UKRI Infrastructure Fund have launched a new consortium to advance gravitational wave research.

The consortium, led by the University of Glasgow, will develop designs for new hardware and data analysis techniques for use in two future international gravitational wave detector development programmes.

Supported by a total of £7 million, it will ensure that UK universities and researchers play a key role in helping astronomers probe the furthest reaches of the cosmos.


Ripples in space time

Gravitational wave detectors work by bouncing lasers between mirrors suspended at each end of long pipes.

Gravitational waves are faint ripples in spacetime caused by enormous astronomical events like the collision of black holes. As they pass through the detectors, they cause miniscule variations in the distance between the mirrors measured by the lasers.

Analysis of the data captured during the passthrough of the gravitational waves can reveal a wealth of information about their origins in space.

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