Union Cabinet gave in-principle approval to LIGO-India project to study gravitational waves

Feb 18, 2016 08:00 IST

The Union Cabinet on 17 February 2016 gave in-principal approval to the Laser Interferometer Gravitational-wave Observatory (LIGO) - India project to study gravitational waves.

The approval coincided with the announcement of international scientists in February 2016 about the detection of gravitational waves in the LIGO facilities located in the USA.

LIGO-India is a part of the IndIGO (Indian Initiative in Gravitational-wave Observations) initiative and seeks to move one Advanced LIGO detector from Hanford to India.

What, Why & How of India’s gravitational wave observatory initiative IndIGO

Features of LIGO-India Project

• It will establish a state-of-the-art gravitational wave observatory in India in collaboration with the LIGO Laboratory in the USA that is run by Caltech and MIT.

• It will involve constructing eight kilometer long beam tube at ultra-high vacuum on a levelled terrain.

• The project will bring unprecedented opportunities for scientists and engineers to dig deeper into the realm of gravitational wave and take global leadership in this new astronomical frontier.

• It will bring considerable opportunities in cutting edge technology for the Indian industry.

• The project will motivate Indian students and young scientists to explore newer frontiers of knowledge, and will add further impetus to scientific research in the country.

• It piloted by the Department of Atomic Energy and Department of Science and Technology (DST).

• It is envisaged as an international collaboration between the LIGO Laboratory and three lead institutions in the IndIGO consortium.

• The three lead institutions are - Institute of Plasma Research (IPR) Gandhinagar, Inter University Centre for Astronomy and Astrophysics (IUCAA), Pune and Raja Ramanna Centre for Advanced Technology (RRCAT), Indore.

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