The Astrophysical and Cosmological Relativity Division
Binary systems composed of black holes and/or neutron stars are the most promising and exciting sources for gravitational-wave detectors. The successful search for these sources requires detailed knowledge of the expected signals. Scientists in the “Astrophysical and Cosmological Relativity” division develop sophisticated analytical and numerical methods to solve the Einstein equations and predict highly accurate template waveforms.
These templates are employed to detect gravitational-wave signals, infer astrophysical and cosmological properties of the sources and test general relativity in the weak and strong-field regimes. The waveform models developed in this division were used by the LIGO Scientific Collaboration for the first observation of gravitational waves from binary black hole mergers.
Researchers in the “Astrophysical and Cosmological Relativity” division are members of the LIGO Scientific Collaboration, the European Pulsar Timing Array and LISA, a future space-based gravitational-wave detector. Some members work at the AEI in Hannover and specialize in searches for gravitational waves from rotating neutron stars (pulsars).