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What Exactly Happens When a Gravitational Wave is Detected?
February 12 @ 2:30 pm - 3:20 pm
Tyler Knowles, Physics ’13, will present a seminar on his graduate thesis work on the detection of gravitational waves.
Abstract: When a gravitational wave is detected, answering the question “What exactly generated this wave?” is crucial to advancing our scientific understanding. Addressing this question requires us to compare the detected signal against millions of theoretical waveform predictions. One of the state-of-the-art pieces of software used to generate these theoretical predictions was about a factor of 1000 too slow for this analysis to be performed. In this talk I will give an overview of gravitational waves and their generation, and report on numerical analysis techniques used to optimize the waveform generation software by a factor of ~400.