Each year, during the last quarter of the calendar year, it comes the time to declare the names of the new Nobel laureates.
The Nobel academy confers this award to individuals, making significant contributions in different spheres that closely revolves around the daily. This includes the physicist as well as landmarking and remarkable contributions in the domain of Physics.
The Nobel Academy declares the name of the new Nobel Laureates in Physics
For the ongoing year, the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences picked Rainer Weiss, Kip S. Throne and Barry V. Barish as the joint recipient of the Nobel Prize in Physics 2017. These eminent physicists shall receive this honor for their efforts and endeavors on Gravitational Waves.
Though the committee received a lot of nominations for this award, they finally opted for this trio, considering the fact their work addresses one of the major mysteries of Nature that would throw new insight on the fundamentals of Gravity.
Looking back to the exploration of Gravitational Waves
It was in September 2015, for the first time, the concept of Gravitational Waves got detected, with the help of Laser-enabled observatory for Gravitational Wave.
As it was foreseen by Elbert Einstein, more than a century back, these waves arise due to the collision of 2 black holes that happened approximately 1.3 Billion years back.
The research team included more than a thousand researchers from more than 20 nations. Weiss, Barish, and Throne played an exponential role in executing the project as per the plan.
It was somewhere in 1970’s that Weiss hinted upon the possibility of a background noise that is likely to influence the reading of gravitational waves and he conceived an interferometer that comes laser-enabled and features the capacity to overcome this hindrance.
Weiss and Throne were convinced that it is possible to detect the Gravitational Waves on Earth and subsequently, these waves can be given a strong push. This conviction formed the foundation of the research that eventually explored the Gravitational waves.
It was in 1994 that Barish joined the project as one of its directors, against the backdrop of time that was highly challenging and it was assumed that the project might be abandoned in the midway.
Barish stood tall to overcome this challenge, completing the construction of the framework by 1999 and the initial measurement being recorded in 2002.
This exploration is definitely a landmarking one and hence, no debates rose about the selection of this trio as the recipient of the Nobel Prize in Physics.