LIGO Document G1601533-v4

LIGO's First Observing Run: Gravitational-Wave Astronomy on the Rise

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On September 14, 2015, subtle ripples in the fabric of space-time were detected by the twin LIGO interferometers, heralding the opening of the first observational run (O1) with second generation interferometers and gravitational-wave astronomy itself. By the close of that run, two additional significant events had been collected along with a wealth of scientific return. With observing scheduled to resume in September, the LIGO and Virgo interferometers are poised to directly measure the properties of a population of binary black holes and their mergers, advancing inquiries into astrophysics and strong-field general relativity which would have been otherwise inaccessible. In this talk, I will elaborate on the progression of sensitivity leading up to O1, highlight many of the important results of the first observing run, present some of the novel methods which produced them, explore their implications, and finally delve into some of the possibilities for future runs.
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