Exploring the Universe of Black Holes with Gravitational Waves

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This public lecture was organised as part of the 30th Texas Symposium on Relativistic Astrophysics, hosted by the University of Portsmouth, 15 – 20 December 2019.

The recent discovery of gravitational waves from colliding black holes has provided us with a new window onto astrophysics and cosmology.

Join us at the Portsmouth Guildhall Auditorium where Professor Bernard Schutz will host an informative and lively discussion with a panel of leading experts in the emerging field of gravitational wave astronomy.

Panel members

Bernard Schutz

Professor in Physics and Astronomy, Cardiff University

Bernard's work focuses on gravitational wave detection and astronomy; he is a senior member of the LIGO Scientific Collaboration. Starting in 1985 his Cardiff group pioneered the methods used today to recognise weak gravitational wave signals buried in noise.

This led to discovering how gravitational waves enable us to measure distances across the universe, in recognition of which in 2019 he was elected to the US National Academy of Sciences and also received the Eddington Medal of the Royal Astronomical Society.

He is also an Emeritus Director of the Max Planck Institute for Gravitational Physics (Albert Einstein Institute) in Potsdam, Germany, where he was a director from 1995 until 2014. While there he established the open-access journal Living Reviews in Relativity. He is also Adjunct Professor of Physics at Georgia Institute of Technology in the USA.

Sheila Rowan

Chair of Natural Philosophy and, since 2009, Director of the Institute for Gravitational Research at the University of Glasgow

She received the Hoyle Medal and Prize of the Institute of Physics in 2016 in recognition of her pioneering research on aspects of the technology of gravitational wave observatories.

Bangalore Sathyaprakash

Bert Elsbach Professor of Physics, Professor of Astronomy and Astrophysics and Associate Director of the Institute for Gravitation and the Cosmos at Penn State University

His research focuses on gravitational wave sources and science, algorithms for their detection and data analysis, and strong field tests of Einstein's general relativity. He is currently leading an international consortium of scientists to develop the science case for the next generation of ground-based gravitational wave detectors.

Tanja Hinderer

Tanja Hinderer is a researcher in gravitational-wave astrophysics at the DeltaITP and GRAPPA institutes at the University of Amsterdam.

She obtained her PhD in physics from Cornell University and was then a Sherman Fairchild Prize Fellow at Caltech, a research associate at the University of Maryland and the Max Planck Institute for Gravitational Physics, and an Excellence Fellow at Radboud University.

Her research expertise is in analytical modeling and focuses on gravitational waves as probes of the fundamental physics of neutron stars, black holes, and strong-field gravity.

Dr Laura Nuttall

Dr Laura Nuttall is a senior lecturer in gravitational waves in the Institute of Cosmology and Gravitation at the University of Portsmouth. She received her PhD from the University of Cardiff, has held postdoctoral positions at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee and Syracuse University, and been a Marie Skłodowska-curie actions COFUND Fellow at Cardiff University.

Dr Nuttall's research focuses on extracting gravitational-wave signals from merging compact objects, as observed by LIGO, as well as observing the electromagnetic counterparts of gravitational-wave signals.