Watch the videos in this section to learn about what gravitational waves are, how they will be detected, and where they come from.
Videos, documentaries about LIGO
"A New Ear on the Universe," a 50-min podcast produced by BBC World Services Radio show, "The Documentary," was aired on September 26, 2015. Check the show's website for airing times, audio clips from the show, and more. The show's podcast.
"Science stories -- Collaboration," a 5-min video produced by The Royal Society of the UK, giving a brief overview of history of GW science from bar detectors to laser interferometers, and talking about LSC's role in an international effort to detect gravitational waves.
"LIGO Generations," a 25-min documentary showing how scientists bridge the gap between the special language of astrophysics
and bright young students.
Einstein's Messengers -- Watch an award-winning 20-minute
documentary on LIGO from the National Science Foundation. Related
classroom activities and educational resources can be found at the
Einstein's Messengers homepage.
Video credit: National Science Foundation
Watch "Astronomy's New Messengers," a video from the 2010 World Science Festival featuring physicists Kip Thorne and Rainer Weiss, astrophysicist Andrea Lommen, string theorist Brian Greene, science writer and author Marcia Bartusiak, discussing how LIGO may open a new window on observing the cosmos.
"LIGO: A Passion for Understanding" -- Watch a 22-minute documentary about LIGO exploring the science behind it, by filmmaker Kai Staats. The documentary premiered on Space.com on April 15, 2014.
Gravity: Making Waves -- Learn more about gravitational waves through this essay and an
eight-minute video (or watch it below!) from the American Museum of Natural History. The site also includes a visual tour of a
LIGO observatory and an interactive demonstration of how the
Video credit: American Museum of Natural History
100 Hours of
Astronomy -- Watch Michael Landry report from the LIGO Hanford Observatory control room during the online
celebration of 100 Hours of Astronomy. Recorded on April 3, 2009.
Learn more about black holes and the scientists that study them.
Scientists from around the world are interviewed by a young musician.
LIGO on Future Talk --
Mysteries of the Universe. Watch Brian Lantz and Riccardo
Bassiri (Stanford University) explaining how LIGO works and discussing its technology transfers.
Video credit: Future Talk
Gravitational Wave Sounds
-- Listen to the gravitational radiation from binary black holes.
MIT associate professor Scott Hughes has converted the amplitude and
frequency information from gravitational wave simulations and turned
them into audio files, available in .wav and mp3 formats.
Turn your phone into a "gravitational wave machine" with our new ringtones made from purely gravitational wave "sounds." Gravitational wave sounds by LIGO, ringtones by Milde Science Communication, Germany.
- "Enchilada Cool Waves": Download for iPhone or android/wav format
- "Black Hole Billiards": Download for iPhone or android/wav format
- "GW Chill out": Download for iPhone or android/wav format
Click on the thumbnails below to see a gallery of photographs for each subject heading.
LIGO Hanford Observatory
LIGO Livingston Observatory
People at work
LIGO from above
Aerial view of the LIGO Hanford Observatory.
Credit: Caltech/MIT/LIGO Laboratory.