Nov 1, 2020

What 50 gravitational-wave events reveal about the Universe

Posted by in categories: cosmology, physics

The catalogue also provides information on how the black holes spin, which holds the key to understanding how the objects came to orbit each other before they merged. It shows that, in some binary systems, the two black holes have misaligned axes of rotation, which would imply that they formed separately. But many other binaries appear to have roughly aligned axes of rotation, which is what astrophysicists expect when the two black holes began their lives as a binary star system. Two schools of thought in astrophysics have each favoured one of the two scenarios, but it now appears that both were correct, Fishbach says.

Astrophysicists now have enough black-hole mergers to map their frequency over the cosmos’s history.

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