There's been some huge news in the world of cosmology: for the first time scientists have detected a low frequency hum of gravitational waves. The new results were published by the North American Nanohertz Observatory for Gravitational Waves, NANOGrav for short. The NANOGrav team were not alone — they coordinated with collaborations in Europe, India, Australia, and China, which released similar findings at the same time.
In this podcast we find out what these new results mean, and why they're so exciting, with Michalis Agathos, Amelia Drew, and Ulrich Sperhake of the Stephen Hawking Centre for Theoretical Cosmology at the University of Cambridge. Join us on this fascinating, and slightly mind-bending, cosmic ride!
To find out more about the topics discussed in this podcast see:
- Maths in a minute: Gravitational waves
- Maths in a minute: Black holes
- Maths in a minute: Einstein's general theory of relativity
You might also want to listen to our recent podcast A new map of dark matter.
The illustration above is an artist's rendering of black hole binaries emitting gravitational waves, produced by Olena Shmahalo for NANOGrav and reproduced here under CC BY 4.0.