The GEO600 project aims at the direct detection of gravitational waves by means of a laser interferometer of 600 m armlength. Gravitational waves are extremely small ripples in the structure of spacetime caused by astrophysical events like supernovae or coalescing massive binaries (neutron stars, black holes). They have been predicted by Albert Einstein in 1916. On September 14, 2015, the first direct detection of gravitational waves from a binary black hole merger has confirmed Einstein’s vision of the waves, and allowed a fascinating and unique view into the dark side of the cosmos.
GEO600 is a ground-based interferometric gravitational wave detector located near Hannover, Germany. It is designed and operated by scientists from the Max Planck Institute for Gravitational Physics, along with partners in the United Kingdom and is funded by the Science and Technology Facilities Council (STFC). GEO600 is part of a worldwide network of gravitational wave detectors. Two detectors have been constructed in the USA (LIGO), and one each in Italy (Virgo) and Japan (KAGRA). Scientists from GEO600 and LIGO collaborate within the LIGO Scientific Collaboration (LSC). GEO600 scientists together with the Laser Zentrum Hannover (LZH) built the lasers for Advanced LIGO.