Other Maastricht events

Build your own gravitational-wave detector

Past event - 2024
15 May 19:00-22:00
Stadsbrouwerij Maastricht, Oeverwal 12, 6221 EN, Maastricht
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In this interactive session, we will discuss gravitational waves, how they are generated, what they tell us and above all how we can measure them! 

A peek into the heart of the universe with gravitational waves

Alex Amato (Postdoctoral Researcher at the Department for Gravitational Waves and Fundamental Physics (GWFP))
Luca Massaro (PhD student at the Department for Gravitational Waves and Fundamental Physics (GWFP))
Gravitational waves are ripples in spacetime created by violent astrophysical events, such as the merger of black holes. Their effect on Earth is tiny, yet we can learn a lot from them about the nature and origin of the universe itself. To measure gravitational waves and explore the secrets of the universe, we use complex laser interferometers.

Luca is a PhD student at the department for Gravitational Waves and Fundamental Physics (GWFP) of Maastricht University, and Alex is a postdoc in the same group. They are both working on coatings for the mirrors that form the heart of a gravitational-wave detector, and invite you to follow them on a journey from the creation of gravitational waves to measuring them with currently operating detectors.

Build your own Interferometer

Tobias Schoon (PhD student at the Department for Gravitational Waves and Fundamental Physics (GWFP))
Now it is time to build an interferometer ourselves! No worries, Tobias Schoon, a PhD student working on optical control strategies for future gravitational-wave detectors, will guide you through the different subsystems and share some tricks on how to design a detector that rivals currently operating detectors. But be careful: the funding agency only grants you a limited amount of money to create the detector of your dreams, so you will have to make hard choices.

The next generation detector, the Einstein Telescope

Zeb van Ranst (PhD student at the Department for Gravitational Waves and Fundamental Physics (GWFP))
Now that we have built an interferometer together and know about the many design options, we will let an expert take the floor. Zeb is a PhD student at Maastricht University and he is working on the suppression of quantum noise in current and future detectors. This talk will explain the scientists' vision for the next generation European gravitational wave detector, the Einstein Telescope. In order to look as far back in space and time as the dark ages of the universe before light was created, new challenges must be overcome and new technologies explored. What is even more exciting is that the EMR region near Maastricht is taken into account when selecting the location for this research facility, so we will also be looking at the impact of this decision.
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