One of the great unsolved mysteries of modern physics are the to-date elusive gravitational waves -believed by some to be the secret to dark energy. A team of scientists and engineers at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory has brought the world one step closer to “hearing” gravitational waves caused by the rapid motion of massive objects predicted by Albert Einstein in the early 20th century.
If detected these waves will offer an entirely new way to perceive the universe—one that has more in common with hearing than seeing. The research, performed in a lab at JPL in Pasadena, Calif., tested a system of lasers that would fly aboard the proposed space mission called Laser Interferometer Space Antenna, or LISA. The mission’s goal is to detect the subtle, whisper-like signals of gravitational waves, which have yet to be directly observed.
LISA is expected to not only “hear” the waves, but also learn more about their sources — massive objects such as black holes and dead stars, which “sing the waves like melodies out to the universe as the objects accelerate through space and time.” The mission would be able to detect gravitational waves from massive objects in our Milky Way galaxy as well as distant galaxies, allowing scientists to tune into an entirely new language of our universe.
from: The Daily Galaxy