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Scientist Corey Gray and his mother, Sharon Yellowfly, are pictured at one of the two massive detectors that make up the Laser Interferometer Gravitational-Wave Observatory. One facility, where Gray works, is in Washington state, and the other is in Louisiana. Courtesy of Russell Barber hide caption

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Courtesy of Russell Barber

How A Cosmic Collision Sparked A Native American Translator's Labor Of Love

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The Laser Interferometer Gravitational-Wave Observatory is made up of two detectors, this one in Livingston, La., and one near Hanford, Wash. The detectors use giant arms in the shape of an "L" to measure tiny ripples in the fabric of the universe. Caltech/MIT/LIGO Lab hide caption

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Caltech/MIT/LIGO Lab

Massive U.S. Machines That Hunt For Ripples In Space-Time Just Got An Upgrade

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The collision of two neutron stars, seen in an artist's rendering, created both gravitational waves and gamma rays. Researchers used those signals to locate the event with optical telescopes. Robin Dienel/Carnegie Institution for Science hide caption

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Robin Dienel/Carnegie Institution for Science

Astronomers Strike Gravitational Gold In Colliding Neutron Stars

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Einstein realized that if masses moved about, the deformations in space would also move about, propagating like waves, somewhat like what happens when you throw a rock on a pond. But, gravity being such a weak force, the effect is truly tiny and needs something very dramatic to create a signal we can detect here. This is exactly what was found by LIGO and the Nobel winners. traveler1116/Getty Images hide caption

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traveler1116/Getty Images

The star-forming area Messier 17, also known as the Omega Nebula or the Swan Nebula, is a vast region of gas, dust and hot young stars that lies in the heart of the Milky Way in the constellation of Sagittarius. ESO/INAF-VST/OmegaCAM hide caption

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ESO/INAF-VST/OmegaCAM

Spiral galaxy NGC 6814, whose luminous nucleus and spectacular sweeping arms, rippled with an intricate pattern of dark dust, are captured by the Hubble Space Telescope. ESA/Hubble & NASA hide caption

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ESA/Hubble & NASA

The black holes were 14 and 8 times the mass of the sun. As they spiraled together, they sent out gravitational waves. LIGO/T. Pyle hide caption

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LIGO/T. Pyle

Gravitational Waves From Colliding Black Holes Shake Scientists' Detectors Again

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An image from a simulation of two black holes merging. Courtesy of SXS Collaboration hide caption

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Courtesy of SXS Collaboration

Einstein, A Hunch And Decades Of Work: How Scientists Found Gravitational Waves

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A LIGO optics technician inspects one of LIGO's core optics by illuminating its surface with light. It is critical to LIGO's operation that there is no contamination on any of its optical surfaces. Matt Heintze/Caltech/MIT/LIGO Lab hide caption

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Matt Heintze/Caltech/MIT/LIGO Lab