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Astrophysics of Binary Black Holes at the Dawn of Gravitational-Wave Astronomy

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posted on 2020-03-06, 01:40 authored by COLM MICHAEL TALBOT
Nearly a century after gravitational waves were first predicted by general relativity, gravitational waves were directly observed in September 2014, marking the beginning of the field of gravitational-wave astronomy. These travelling distortions of spacetime came from the collision of two black holes, the corpses of massive stars, over a billion light-years away. In the five years since this initial discovery, we have observed dozens more collisions of these cosmic corpses. In this thesis, I introduce theoretical models and computational methods to use this population of observations to learn how stars interact and explode, and probe the nature of spacetime.


Campus location


Principal supervisor

Eric Thrane

Year of Award


Department, School or Centre

Physics and Astronomy


Doctor of Philosophy

Degree Type



Faculty of Science