Contact: Wendel Sloan at 505.562.2253
PORTALES—An expert in gravitational waves will present a free public lecture in Room 214 of the Science Building at 5:30 p.m. on Friday, April 28, at Eastern New Mexico University in Portales.
Although gravity has been studied for more than four centuries, it remains on the frontiers of modern scientific research and discovery. Dr. Stephen Lau, a postdoctoral fellow at the University of New Mexico, will speak on "Gravitational Waves and Numerical Relativity."
Lau is researching numerical methods for simulating gravitational waves. Such simulations are necessary for predicting signatures of gravitational waves emitted in various astrophysical events. Lau has collaborated with researchers worldwide in several areas of general relativity, including concepts of gravitational energy. Prior to his work at the University of New Mexico, he collaborated with Richard Price, a world-renowned expert in general relativity at the Center for Gravitational Wave Astronomy at the University of Texas at Brownsville.
In ongoing work with Price, he is developing numerical methods for approximately calculating the gravitational wave signature expected from orbiting black holes.
According to Dr. William Andersen, associate professor of physics at ENMU, the field of gravitational-wave astronomy promises to be one of the more revolutionary ventures in science as experimentalists around the world vie to be the first to detect the ripples in space and time which constitute these waves. Although not yet directly detected, the existence of gravitational waves has been unambiguously verified by the observation of certain binary star systems whose orbits around each other are seen to lose energy in precise agreement with the predictions of general relativity.
For more information, call Dr. William Andersen at 505.562.2355.