• Record: found
  • Abstract: found
  • Article: found
Is Open Access

Observation of Gravitational Waves from a Binary Black Hole Merger




Read Bookmark
      There is no author summary for this article yet. Authors can add summaries to their articles on ScienceOpen to make them more accessible to a non-specialist audience.


      On September 14, 2015 at 09:50:45 UTC the two detectors of the Laser Interferometer Gravitational-Wave Observatory simultaneously observed a transient gravitational-wave signal. The signal sweeps upwards in frequency from 35 to 250 Hz with a peak gravitational-wave strain of \(1.0 \times 10^{-21}\). It matches the waveform predicted by general relativity for the inspiral and merger of a pair of black holes and the ringdown of the resulting single black hole. The signal was observed with a matched-filter signal-to-noise ratio of 24 and a false alarm rate estimated to be less than 1 event per 203 000 years, equivalent to a significance greater than 5.1 {\sigma}. The source lies at a luminosity distance of \(410^{+160}_{-180}\) Mpc corresponding to a redshift \(z = 0.09^{+0.03}_{-0.04}\). In the source frame, the initial black hole masses are \(36^{+5}_{-4} M_\odot\) and \(29^{+4}_{-4} M_\odot\), and the final black hole mass is \(62^{+4}_{-4} M_\odot\), with \(3.0^{+0.5}_{-0.5} M_\odot c^2\) radiated in gravitational waves. All uncertainties define 90% credible intervals.These observations demonstrate the existence of binary stellar-mass black hole systems. This is the first direct detection of gravitational waves and the first observation of a binary black hole merger.

      Related collections

      Author and article information


      Custom metadata
      Phys. Rev. Lett. 116, 061102 (2016)
      16 pages, 4 figures
      gr-qc astro-ph.HE
      Lvc Publications
      ScienceOpen disciplines:


      added an editorial note to Gravitational Waves

      An important new dicovery that supports a previous theory made by none other than Albert Einstein almost 100 years ago. The gravitational waves represent the warping of space-time caused by the collision of two black holes, more than a billion light years away from Earth. The discovery was made by the LIGO collaboration, and might be one of the most important developments in recent years for science.

      2016-02-15 08:50 UTC
      One person recommends this

      Comment on this article

      Register to benefit from advanced discovery features on more than 34,000,000 articles

      Already registered?