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Primeur weekly 2016-02-15

Quantum computing

Nanoscale cavity strongly links quantum particles ...

Focus on Europe

The Academy of Finland is funding research infrastructures with 13,6 million euro ...

Record for fastest data rate set ...

Middleware

SDSC and Intel open second Intel Parallel Computing Center at SDSC ...

Hardware

New supercomputer to address needs of Ohio researchers ...

Altera SoC FPGA technology demonstrations showcase the future of embedded designs ...

Further expansion in the Netherlands of Bull supercomputer at SURFsara in 2016 ...

Cray reports 2015 full year and fourth quarter financial results ...

GridGain Enterprise Edition 7.5 increases speed and scalability of the In-Memory Data Fabric ...

Chip could bring deep learning to mobile devices ...

Applications

Researchers to use supercomputer to 'hack' Ebola ...

Seven University of Wyoming projects awarded use of Cheyenne supercomputer ...

Cornell astrophysicists play vital role to validate detection of gravitational waves ...

Study challenges widely accepted theory of Yellowstone formation ...

What was NCSA's role in the discovery of gravitational waves? ...

Georgia Gwinnett College physicist leads team in innovative black hole research ...

The Cloud

NICE to join forces with Amazon Web Services ...

Bell teams up with IBM to bring new hybrid Cloud capabilities to Canadian market ...

IBM achieves highest U.S. Defense Information Systems Agency authorization for Cloud services ...

VMware introduces next-generation hyper-converged software enabling simple, high performance infrastructure for the software-defined data centre ...

VMware accelerates the shift to digitization and hybrid Cloud with the introduction of vRealize Suite ...

Cornell astrophysicists play vital role to validate detection of gravitational waves

11 Feb 2016 Ithaca - Cornell physics and astrophysics professor Saul Teukolsky has been using supercomputers to solve Einstein's equations for black hole mergers for much of his career. Saul Teukolsky, the Hans A. Bethe Professor of Physics and Astrophysics, and the Cornell-founded Simulation of eXtreme Spacetimes (SXS) collaboration group have been calculating and completing a full catalogue of theoretical solutions since 2000, when supercomputers first became capable of the task.

The Laser Interferometer Gravitational-Wave Observatory (LIGO) and Virgo group confirmed that the waves came from a black hole merger by comparing their data with a theoretical model developed at Cornell.

Saul Teukolsky stated: "The LIGO announcement describes one of the greatest scientific discoveries of the past 50 years. Gravitational waves have been a theoretical prediction of Einstein's general theory of relativity for the past 100 years."

"Our group has been solving Einstein's equations on supercomputers to predict the precise form of the signal that should be seen. Our theoretical predictions lie right on top of the experimentalist's measurements - an exciting confirmation of general relativity."

"Finally these waves have been detected on Earth with an unbelievably sensitive experiment. And, surprisingly, the source of the waves is a system of two black holes in orbit around each other, that spiral inward and smash together."

This computer simulation shows the collision of two black holes, a tremendously powerful event detected for the first time ever by the Laser Interferometer Gravitational-Wave Observatory, which detected gravitational waves as the black holes spiraled toward each other, collided and merged. This simulation shows what the merger event would look if humanity could somehow travel for a closer look. It was created by the Cornell-founded Simulating eXtreme Spacetimes (SXS) project.

Credit: Simulating eXtreme Spacetimes Project

Led by scientists from the LIGO collaboration at the California Institute of Technology and the Virgo group collaboration, research published February 11 inPhysical Review Lettersreports the detection. The waves result from two black holes spiraling in toward one another and smashing together.

Until now, this scenario had only been predicted theoretically. Many astrophysicists doubted that it would occur often enough ever to be detected. However, soon after LIGO detectors in Livingston, Louisiana, and Hanford, Washington, were upgraded last summer, in September scientists found two black holes - each about 35 times the mass of our sun - moving at more than half the speed of light, orbiting each other and creating waves. Researchers spent the autumn confirming results.

"You need big computers because the equations are so complicated", explained Larry Kidder, senior research associate and a co-leader of the SXS collaboration. One calculation - with varying masses and spin rates - takes a supercomputer a full week to solve, running 24 hours a day. With different parameters, some calculations take months. SXS created a theoretical catalogue of what the different possible gravitational waves would look like.

Saul Teukolsky said that the new LIGO paper shows the measured waves with an SXS wave superposed on top and in excellent agreement with the measurements. "That's a very strong confirmation that these are gravitational waves that come from black holes - and that Einstein's general theory of relativity is correct", he stated.

With the LIGO confirmation of direct detection of gravitational waves, "This is a theorist's dream, the best possible source (two black holes) you could have", Saul Teukolsky stated.

On the news from LIGO, Saul Teukolsky explained: "This is something I've been working on ever since I came to Cornell. This is probably the most exciting episode in my professional career."

In addition to Saul Teukolsky and Larry Kidder, contributing to the Cornell work were research associates Michael Boyle and Scott Field, and graduate students Andrew Bohn, Francois Hebert and William Throwe.

Source: Cornell University

Back to Table of contents

Primeur weekly 2016-02-15

Quantum computing

Nanoscale cavity strongly links quantum particles ...

Focus on Europe

The Academy of Finland is funding research infrastructures with 13,6 million euro ...

Record for fastest data rate set ...

Middleware

SDSC and Intel open second Intel Parallel Computing Center at SDSC ...

Hardware

New supercomputer to address needs of Ohio researchers ...

Altera SoC FPGA technology demonstrations showcase the future of embedded designs ...

Further expansion in the Netherlands of Bull supercomputer at SURFsara in 2016 ...

Cray reports 2015 full year and fourth quarter financial results ...

GridGain Enterprise Edition 7.5 increases speed and scalability of the In-Memory Data Fabric ...

Chip could bring deep learning to mobile devices ...

Applications

Researchers to use supercomputer to 'hack' Ebola ...

Seven University of Wyoming projects awarded use of Cheyenne supercomputer ...

Cornell astrophysicists play vital role to validate detection of gravitational waves ...

Study challenges widely accepted theory of Yellowstone formation ...

What was NCSA's role in the discovery of gravitational waves? ...

Georgia Gwinnett College physicist leads team in innovative black hole research ...

The Cloud

NICE to join forces with Amazon Web Services ...

Bell teams up with IBM to bring new hybrid Cloud capabilities to Canadian market ...

IBM achieves highest U.S. Defense Information Systems Agency authorization for Cloud services ...

VMware introduces next-generation hyper-converged software enabling simple, high performance infrastructure for the software-defined data centre ...

VMware accelerates the shift to digitization and hybrid Cloud with the introduction of vRealize Suite ...