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The Absurdity of Detecting Gravitational Waves

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posted on Jan, 9 2017 @ 10:51 AM
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originally posted by: intrptr
a reply to: FauxMulder


I believe the answer to this is that the gravitational waves the sun puts out are way too small for us to detect.

But hold our earth in orbit. How powerful is that influence of gravity compared to these 1 billion light year removed waves?


So tiny that it only distorts light 1 / 10000 of the width of a proton.



Galactic black holes hold billions of suns in their sphere of influence.


Neutron stars are IN our galaxy.



If gravity waves that far away are so intense as to outshine our suns gravity so much, they should have some impact on our orbit, ya think? Can't they tune this super sensitive device to read our own suns gravity 'waves'?


If something immensely more dense than our Sun can only distort LIGHT (how much mass does light have?) 1 / 10000 the width of a proton than why would it be able to affect our orbit?

If you had this contraption on a planet in another solar system in our galaxy, would you be able to detect our sun? No, but you would still be able to detect the same neutron stars and black holes.



edit on 9-1-2017 by FauxMulder because: (no reason given)




posted on Jan, 9 2017 @ 10:53 AM
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originally posted by: Bedlam
a reply to: intrptr

Water, air waves etc are qualitatively different from EM. EM radiation is not 'waves of photons' like water is a wave of water or sound is a compression wave of air.

But that flies in the face of all detection apparatus we have devised to detect the passage of all energetic particles arriving as wave fronts from all the spectra. Geiger counters for instance detect emissions as individual strikes of particles from sources. Alpha, Beta, Gamms...Xray, , proton, neutron,photon, neutrino, a plethora of quirkies, even cosmic ray detectors .

The great collider thingy detects particles in great subatomic smashups, charts their decay. Everything we measure is comprised of particles, in large concentrations (or streaming), wave fronts of massed particles.

To now blow my own mind gravity is the only one of these forces that attracts, instead of applying pressure. Okay so does that make it the only force in physics (so far) that is purely wave energy? Or just one we haven't actually been able to lock onto, yet?

(Grumbles a lot under breath)
edit on 9-1-2017 by intrptr because: spelling



posted on Jan, 9 2017 @ 10:59 AM
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But hold our earth in orbit. How powerful is that influence of gravity compared to these 1 billion light year removed waves?



So tiny that it only distorts light 1 / 10000 of the width of a proton.

Sorry for my underedumakated misspelled ramblings, just an amateur self read questioneer.

My questions are among those that even the most learned physicists are also asking.

It doesn't add up, Its "absurd".
edit on 9-1-2017 by intrptr because: additional



posted on Jan, 9 2017 @ 11:04 AM
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a reply to: intrptr

I like questions, they force you to challenge your own knowledge to be able to answer them or maybe even learn you were wrong about something in the process. That's why I like ATS, at least when it isn't people looking for an echo chamber though.



posted on Jan, 9 2017 @ 11:06 AM
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originally posted by: FauxMulder
a reply to: intrptr

I like questions, they force you to challenge your own knowledge to be able to answer them or maybe even learn you were wrong about something in the process. That's why I like ATS, at least when it isn't people looking for an echo chamber though.

Agreed. Not afraid to ask dumb questions helps deny ignorance.

Thank you, this went down with my morning coffee, quite well.



posted on Jan, 9 2017 @ 11:07 AM
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a reply to: Bedlam




You don't need something to "wave" to have a wave. EM is composed of photons, but the "waves" are electric and magnetic fields. There are no particles "waving" like water and air waves.


and this is exactly the problem with modern physics.

Maxwell derived the electromagnetic wave equations from fluid mechanics, that is no accident and no coincidence.



posted on Jan, 9 2017 @ 11:21 AM
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a reply to: Dr X

It's what he started with. As he worked on it, he found there were no longitudinal solutions in a vacuum.

You can get them in a waveguide.

ps the lcd you're looking at tells you they're transverse
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posted on Jan, 9 2017 @ 12:44 PM
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a reply to: Bedlam

ps the lcd you're looking at tells you they're transverse

In other words light 'radiates' in all directions, every wave begins as a shock front... of particles, very dense but as they disperse they become more sparse, particle wise.

Like the neutrinos from a supernova they detect in underground tanks. Just a few neutrinos arrive signaling the event.

A lcd continuously streams light.
edit on 9-1-2017 by intrptr because: bb code



posted on Jan, 9 2017 @ 12:44 PM
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Love this. The more we learn about space the more we learn about the history of everything.



posted on Jan, 9 2017 @ 02:30 PM
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reply to: FauxMulder

"How much mass does light have?"






"Einstein showed that energy and mass were related --- so in that sense, light does have inertial mass --- but it it still doesn't have rest mass; so it is indeed affected by gravity."

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posted on Jan, 9 2017 @ 02:54 PM
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originally posted by: intrptr
Outstanding layman terms layout. Watching video....

Edit: If gravity travels in 'waves', can one assume that gravity is made of particles like waves of light, water and air? Does that mean they are looking for that 'graviton' (particle)?


Theoretically, but such gravitons would be essentially undetectable by any technology one at a time.

How were photons really confirmed in modern detail? There were experiments done with precision instruments & photodetectors, and as the intensity of the light got lower and lower, at some point the experiments started showing certain statistical properties and discreteness which was not part of Maxwell's equations classically, but are part of quantum optics (quantum field theory of maxwell's equations). That directly proves photons.

Surprisingly, discreteness of photons are not that far away to common human experience: the noise and capability of digital cameras in low light is limited in significant measure by quantized photons, they are measuring individual quanta of light plus quanta of electronic noise fluctuations, and the first is important. That's why 'full frame' or larger CMOS/CCD sensors in cameras give better results---simply more physical area to pick up photons. And it cannot be shrunk much further with technology, the photon limit is fundamental.

There is 0 chance of doing that with gravitational waves as far as we can tell. The individual graviton would induce such a negligible influence that it could not be detected one at a time, unlike photons.

Personally, I could imagine it happening only if we found some way of making large amplitude *high frequency* gravitational waves (GHz, THz, +++) so that the individual graviton would be much more energetic, but again, no known technological way to make that happen and no known natural source---i.e. pure magic at this stage.




Why are they waiting for these 'black hole events' to measure gravitons? Can't we get a close up of intense gravity measurement from our own sun?


For waves, you need major movements in large amounts of mass, not just lots of mass. A rock in the bottom of a lake doesn't make waves. A rock thrown into the water does.



Must be expensive to fire this mw laser, how do they know when the waves arrive from some billion year ago event, down to the 'tenth of a second?


clocks.


Are they firing it continuously hoping they catch some distant merger of black holes, by accident?


Yes. They try to keep the experiments (there are two in different parts of the world) going continuously as much as possible. They take the two datasets and do lots of signal processing and look for interesting events in the background noise.


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posted on Jan, 9 2017 @ 03:25 PM
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originally posted by: intrptr
a reply to: FauxMulder


Thank you Mulder...


after a major upgrade, where LIGO was outfitted with extra-special noise-cancelling headphones, higher-power lasers, and larger mirrors, the Advanced LIGO detectors made their VERY FIRST OBSERVATION of gravitational waves on September 14, 2015, within days of becoming fully operational! This means either LIGO got lucky, or these kinds of events are relatively common.


Ummm hmm, and I am going to strike lotto the first time I buy a ticket. See my point? Something fishy here. Converging back holes are not that common.

What other 'undisclosed' purpose does this contraption have? I bore in on this because to me its seems such a delicate passage of such distant gravity waves would be out shined[/]i by the close source of gravity, our own sun. No...?

It also seems continuous firing of a mw laser is expensive, in the hopes of catching such rare events.


I think the gravity waves of conveging black holes would be coming continuously over a LONG period of time (like cosmic long.)

But then, I'm no astrophysicist, so I I could easily be completely wrong. If it's a a quick burst (even if by "quick" we're talking hundreds, maybe even thousands of years long, then I agree, it might be an awfully fishy smelling scenario.



posted on Jan, 9 2017 @ 03:28 PM
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Andromeda-Milky Way Collision




"When the two supermassive black holes [that exist in the center of each galaxy] [after Andromeda-Milky Way galaxys collide 4 billion years from now] come within one light year of each other, they will emit gravitational waves that will radiate orbital energy until they merge completely."



en.wikipedia.org...

"Milky Way Versus Andromeda As Seen From Earth"
www.youtube.com...





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posted on Jan, 9 2017 @ 07:19 PM
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originally posted by: dogstar23

originally posted by: intrptr
a reply to: FauxMulder


Thank you Mulder...


after a major upgrade, where LIGO was outfitted with extra-special noise-cancelling headphones, higher-power lasers, and larger mirrors, the Advanced LIGO detectors made their VERY FIRST OBSERVATION of gravitational waves on September 14, 2015, within days of becoming fully operational! This means either LIGO got lucky, or these kinds of events are relatively common.


Ummm hmm, and I am going to strike lotto the first time I buy a ticket. See my point? Something fishy here. Converging back holes are not that common.

What other 'undisclosed' purpose does this contraption have? I bore in on this because to me its seems such a delicate passage of such distant gravity waves would be out shined by the close source of gravity, our own sun. No...?

It also seems continuous firing of a mw laser is expensive, in the hopes of catching such rare events.


I think the gravity waves of conveging black holes would be coming continuously over a LONG period of time (like cosmic long.)

But then, I'm no astrophysicist, so I I could easily be completely wrong. If it's a a quick burst (even if by "quick" we're talking hundreds, maybe even thousands of years long, then I agree, it might be an awfully fishy smelling scenario.

From what I understood in the video (?) presented in the OP, the last 1/10 of a second just as they collide, before winking out, they produce the strongest waves, the ones they detected.

I was wondering about that as well. They need to 'tune' the system more, to detect other lesser waves from similar occurrences from less massive objects. I think some waves were being emitted beforehand , just not as strong.

I also wondered at the fat chance they caught one of those collisions shortly after it was upgraded. I too wonder about the power consumption of the lasers waiting for god knows how long for the waves to arrive. Are they for real? It could be another billion years before the next one...
edit on 9-1-2017 by intrptr because: bb code



posted on Jan, 9 2017 @ 07:30 PM
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a reply to: mbkennel

Thank you, thank you for taking the time to detail your reply.


There is 0 chance of doing that with gravitational waves as far as we can tell. The individual graviton would induce such a negligible influence that it could not be detected one at a time, unlike photons.

Personally, I could imagine it happening only if we found some way of making large amplitude *high frequency* gravitational waves (GHz, THz, +++) so that the individual graviton would be much more energetic, but again, no known technological way to make that happen and no known natural source---i.e. pure magic at this stage.

Having trouble wrapping my mind around gravity which attracts objects and these expanding waves or ripples in space time that interferes with a (no mass) light beam.

Also could gravity be a field like the earths magnetic field, i.e., we don't have a 'magneton' detector either.

Thanks for the rest of the info... my head spins around this.



posted on Jan, 9 2017 @ 09:03 PM
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originally posted by: FauxMulder
I saw this great video yesterday on the Veritasium channel on YouTube.
I watched the same video a few days before your thread and some if it I knew but I didn't realize this part:


The laser uses 1 megawatt of energy. That's 1 MILLION watts. 1 MW hour can serve about 650 residential homes.
The video explains why it's so powerful but then I got to thinking about conservation of energy as in where does this million watts go? Since energy is conserved it can't just vanish, so maybe it's converted into heat in the detection system and maybe they have some kind of cooling system in place to remove all that heat? I tried to search about 10 minutes for an explanation but I kept getting information about the energy from the black holes and not energy from the lasers but if someone happens to know where that million watts goes when they are done with it I'd be interested to know. I know how a car radiator removes heat from the combustion engine and maybe they have some kind of cooling system along those lines but it must be a big one to handle a million watts.

Thanks for putting some effort into your thread, S+F to recognize this. So many other threads are made with so little effort that it's nice to see one like this that's both interesting and informative and even has lots of cool pics.



posted on Jan, 10 2017 @ 03:26 AM
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originally posted by: intrptr
A lcd continuously streams light.


It depends on a polarizer.



posted on Jan, 10 2017 @ 03:51 AM
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a reply to: Arbitrageur

I find it disturbing that they confuse power and energy.

Googling a bit shows the actual laser power output of 200W: www.ligo.caltech.edu...

The 1 MW power figure is what they call the circulating laser power in the interferometer, the photons contained in it.

I found one source that claims a storage time of about 1ms (not sure if it is correct), which at 1MW makes just 1KJ of energy.

So the powering of 650 homes and the vaporizing head statements are total nonsense, coming from people who should know better.



posted on Jan, 10 2017 @ 04:02 AM
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originally posted by: moebius
a reply to: Arbitrageur

I find it disturbing that they confuse power and energy.

Googling a bit shows the actual laser power output of 200W


I had the same issue - the OP stated that the power output was 1MW, I wondered why, seeing that I remembered the thing being much lower (I thought 50W). I went to the LIGO site and it was 200W, but the guy in the video flat out stated the power output was 1MW, so I tossed it as not worth pursuing further.



posted on Jan, 10 2017 @ 04:53 AM
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a reply to: moebius
a reply to: Bedlam
Thanks for the replies. I had some more time to search and I think I found an explanation of the power but this says it's 750 kW instead of 1 MW:

www.ligo.caltech.edu...

Power Boosted Laser

Length isn't the only design factor important to LIGO's sensitivity; laser power is too. While increasing length increases the interferometer's sensitivity to vibrations, increasing laser power improves the interferometer's resolution. The more laser photons there are moving through each arm and merging at the beam splitter, the sharper the resulting interference pattern becomes in the photodector, which in turn makes it 'easier' to recognize the signature flicker of gravitational waves.

But there's a problem here too. For LIGO to operate at full sensitivity, its laser has to shine at 750 kilowatts. But LIGO's laser enters the interferometer at 200 Watts. And just as it is impossible to build a 1120 km-long interferometer, building a 750 kW laser is also a practical impossibility. So how does LIGO boost the power of its laser 3750 times without actually using more power?

More mirrors! Specifically, "power recycling" mirrors placed between the laser source and the beam splitter. Like the beam splitter, the power recycling mirror is only partly reflective (a 'one-way mirror'). The figure at left shows schematically where such a mirror is located.

In a power recycling mirror, light from the laser passes through the transparent side of the mirror to reach the beam splitter where it is split and directed down the arms of the interferometer. The instrument's alignment ensures that nearly all of the reflected laser light from the arms follows a path back to the recycling mirrors rather than to the photodetector. Laser light coming from the arms is reflected back into the interferometer (hence 'recycling') where those photons add to the ones first entering. This process greatly boosts the power of the beam without needing to generate a 750 kW beam at the outset.
This answers my question about how they dissipate the energy from 1MW (or 750 kW if that's the correct value and I'm not sure either value is correct), they don't. In this case it's not "smoke and mirrors", just mirrors without the smoke.
200 W or maybe a bit more is all that needs to be dissipated and that doesn't require anything special.

edit on 2017110 by Arbitrageur because: clarification



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