Theory of General Relativity enunciated by Albert Einstein some 100 years ago, predicted existence of Gravitational Waves (GW hereafter) in cosmos though he himself was not entirely convinced whether these could be perceived. On Feb. 11, 2016 it was announced in Washington DC that first direct observation of GWs was successfully completed, established and verified. GWs are created when two immensely gigantic Black Holes, 1.3 billion Light Years (LY hereafter) away, orbit each other closer and closer, suddenly spiral / collide, followed by their cataclysmic merger accompanied by burst of immense energy. New Black Hole thus created, is equivalent of 62 suns coalesced together. Second time GWs were detected on Jun. 16, 2016 when two Black Holes 1.4 billion LYs away spun around each other 55 times approaching half of velocity of light, merged together into a massive Black Hole 20.8 times entire mass of the sun. When Space-Time Matrix is distorted by massive stars / planets, mysterious forces of gravity are emitted that accelerate objects lying in their domain, so elucidated Einstein in his theory. In a simple language, two massive Black Holes being Very Heavy Density Gravity Bubbles or balls of supremely intense gravity collide and merge causing tremendous disturbance in the entire gravitational matrix translating into waves that may be perceived / measured millions of LYs away.
Space-Time Matrix has always been regarded as a well-knit, infinite continuum of space (in length, breadth and width) and time in the manifest of a single identifiable entity, also known as Minkowski Space after Professor Minkowski (Albert Einstein was his student) who had added fourth dimension to the Euclidean Space Model. It is difficult for human intellect to visualise, Infinite Void undergoing contortion only to revolt into waves and ripples capable of shaking entire consciousness. These waves travel at the velocity of light with diminishing amplitude as they move across infinite stretches of the Infinite Void. When they arrive in close proximity of Planet Earth, they are almost imperceptible being thousand times subtler than the nuclear particle, Proton. In 1970s, Russell Hulse and Joseph Taylor discovered GWs indirectly while studying Binary Pulser PSR B1913+16 wherein orbits of two orbiting Neutron stars decayed gradually before colliding which is impossible to explain without energy depletion through emission of gravitational waves.
An improvised version of Laser Interferometer Gravitational-Wave Observatory (LIGO) whose construction started 22 years ago, could detect and measure these gravitational Space-Time contortions, rather cosmic stretches that bounce to shrink ultimately by splitting a Laser beam into two perpendicular arms each four Kms. long. The machine is so sensitive that it can measure GW that stretches Space-Time Matrix even by ten-thousandth fraction of the width of Proton. Gravitational waves can penetrate any and every object throughout cosmos and emerge from the other end unscathed.
Invocation of the Theory of Relativity or Quantum Mechanics may or may not be able to explain the cosmic phenomenon. However, if the wisdom of Agama / Samkhya Darsana is juxtaposed to these observations, I find it a lot easier to visualise the cosmic event. Albert Einstein had deeply studied Sanatana scriptures and most of his discoveries had been inspired by the wisdom attained therefrom by his own admission.
Many of us have observed simplified version of the phenomenon in a container full of water wherein two or more floating air-bubbles are naturally drifted towards each other, suddenly coalesce raising subtle ripples on the surface of water !!!!! We have observed summer heat creating partial vacuum by diluting air density leading to rushing in of air from surroundings at a great speed causing wind-storms. Like air-bubbles floating on the surface of water, these partial vacuums too, have a tendency to move towards each other and coalesce leading to disturbance in atmosphere.
Entire Space-Time Entity is an infinite ocean, rather an expanding ocean of three Guna-s of Prakrti i.e. Sattva, Raja and Tama. As a matter of fact, Infinite Void is not absolutely void lest it raises the question as to what may be the means / instrumentality with which such a cosmic void has been created. Three Guna-s exist in the form of live / throbbing Spandana i.e. wave-particles, all in a state of well-poised equilibrium. When Cosmic stimulation dilutes density of Guna-s, Black Hole or something similar to that is generated with intense forces of gravity within, caused by the dilution or cosmic vacuum whatever that may be, entirely bereft of Guna-s. Thereafter, they behave like air-bubbles floating on the surface of water as illustrated above. The way air-bubbles coalesce to cause subtle ripples in water, Black Holes merge cataclysmically to emit tremendous waves of gravity in the infinite expanse of cosmos all around. Wherever and whenever the equipoise is disrupted, process to restore the equipoise begins instantly. Disruptions and restorations continue alternately, ceaselessly and infinitely.
Rational question emanates, if all objects in Space-Time Continuum i.e. infinite ocean of three Guna-s cause contortions and therefrom gravity is emitted, then why don’t they all rush towards one another or all towards Black Hole to be de-materialised / annihilated immediately. They don’t in reality because universe is continuously expanding. It is incessant expansion of the universe that prevents complete annihilation of entire universe by counter balancing gravitational forces in a calibrated manner. In other words, constant expansion of universe reduces gravitational contraction to allow universe to exist. So, incessant expansion of the universe is at the root of it’s continuity in existence.
LIGO team was thoughtfully constituted as a sub-group was mandated to create artificial GWs so as to booby trap other scientists by faking GWs to ensure, they remain on their alert not to lose right direction of research. Entire project also included 60 Indian scientists of Raman Research Institute / IUCAA. The machine so constructed happened to be the most sensitive one, never constructed before. On Sept. 14, 2015 at 11 am of Central European Time, Marco Drago, an Italian Post-Doctoral scholar and member of LIGO Scientific Collaboration, was the first to observe waves remotely at the Albert Einstein Institute, Germany. It consumed months and mind-boggling efforts to assure whether the discovery passed Five Sigma Test, gold standard for declaring a new discovery in Physics. The detection was declared GW 150914 corresponding to the date of discovery. The discovery confirmed, existence of Black Holes which is impossible to observe as the Holes do not reflect light to be perceived with.
USA has invited India to raise another such facility to verify observations from a distant location and Government have already sanctioned funds for that. With these highly sophisticated equipment, we shall be able to “see” gravity and listen to GWs emanating from Big Bang too. Black Hole merger is an almost everyday phenomenon and every such merger shall be “heard” immediately with these scientific advances. We hope, our country shall lead from the front in this extra-ordinary field of research in years to come.
MAKING WAVES IN OUTER SPACE
by Ramakant Tiwari
(Original title – RIPPLES OF GRAVITY ROCKED UNIVERSAL CONSCIOUSNESS)
Published in The Pioneer dated Jun. 20, 2016