Albert Einstein anticipated gravitational waves in 1916, but several decades were needed before researchers managed to track them down for the first time. They are strong anomalies in the flow of space-time, generated by significant astronomical events which take place in the universe. Researchers are confident that gravitational waves could help them to learn more about the enigmas of the universe. Now, scientists shed more light on the universe expansion thanks to a neutron stars collision.
One of the fascinating puzzles about the universe is its continuous expansion. If one were to look at distant galaxies, regardless of the distance at which they are placed, it would seem that they are moving away from us. The bizarre phenomenon is quite challenging to explain, although some researchers believe that it may be linked to dark matter or dark energy.
A large amount of research focuses on learning more about the speed at which the Universe continues to expand. The elusive value is known as the Hubble constant, and it plays an essential role in scientific projects.
Neutron Stars Collision Shed More Light On The Universe Expansion Rate
There are two methods which allow researchers to estimate the Hubble constant or the universe expansion rate. One of them involves the analysis of background radiation, which continues to linger since the Big Bang took place. The other consists of the study of powerful supernovas which explode in the vast distance of the universe. As expected, the different methods of measuring the constant will often lead to different results.
An international team of researchers plans to tackle the problem by developing a third method. The group explored a neutron stars collision that allowed them to improve the measurement of the Hubble constant. The merger was observed for the first time in 2017 with the help of LIGO and Virgo, and it is classified under the name of GW170817.
The remarkable neutron stars collision was also observed by an advanced gamma-ray detector and optical astronomy facilities, which offered a significant amount of additional scientific data. It is believed that new information could provide answers to more difficult questions. The results were published in a scientific journal.
Bo has over six years experience as a teacher, advocate and speaker. He has a B.S. from Cornell University, and a Ph.D. in Human rights from Harvard University Graduate School.