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Re: [Phys-l] gravitational waves.

At 06:54 -0500 10/26/2010, Bill Nettles wrote:

It did bother me a bit that there was never any indication on the poster that we haven't detected any gravitational waves. I'm reluctant to post the poster without a disclaimer so that my students won't assume the waves have been measured. Contrast this with the publicity surrounding LHC and the Higgs particle ... it's very clear that it hasn't been measured.

It is true that no direct detection of gravity waves has occurred, but the fact that the rotational frequency decay rate of several carefully measured pulsars can be exactly accounted for by the emission of gravitational energy (gravitons) is considered pretty conclusive evidence of their existence by the community.

One must also recall that the existence of neutrinos was assumed to be settled long before they were actually detected (otherwise, why would it have taken 40 years before the feat was recognized by the Nobel Committee?).

I do agree. however. that in the interests of full disclosure the chart needs to be clear that the waveform graphs are theoretical, and no "direct" detection of gravity waves has yet taken place--which isn't to say that there remains any significant controversy over their existence.


Hugh Haskell

It isn't easy being green.

--Kermit Lagrenouille