More light for the future of gravitational-wave astronomy

Due to their special laser beam properties, fiber-based lasers are to be used in gravitational wave detectors in the future, making them ten times more sensitive when listening for gravitational waves. (Photo: LZH)

The new, more powerful laser system in the laboratories of the LZH. (Photo: LZH)

Scientists from the AEI, the LZH, and the LUH have developed a new, powerful laser system for detecting gravitational waves even more accurately in the future. (Photo: LZH)

Researchers from the Max Planck Institute for Gravitational Physics (Albert Einstein Institute, AEI), the Laser Zentrum Hannover e.V. (LZH), and the Leibniz Universität Hannover (LUH) developed a new laser system for more powerful gravitational wave detectors. This system combines the customized light of two high-power lasers with extreme precision, making it possible to further increase the laser system's optical power. In the future, the system will be used in earthbound gravitational wave detection.

For this purpose, the LZH is developing high-performance fiber lasers in cooperation with the AEI. These lasers are interesting due to their special laser beam properties and shall therefore be used in future generations of gravitational wave detectors. These detectors should be ten times more sensitive in listening for gravitational waves than the large current detectors LIGO, Virgo, and KAGRA. The work results have now been published in the journal Optics Express. The work was partially funded by the Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft (DFG, German Research Foundation) within the Cluster of Excellence QuantumFrontiers.

More information can be found in the AEI press release.