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New Gravitational Wave Detection From Colliding Black Holes

In the August event, one black hole with about 31 times the mass of the sun and another with 25 solar masses, combined to make a hole of 53 solar masses. The remaining three solar masses were converted into gravitational waves that radiated more energy than all the stars in the known universe. The observation was in line with earlier gravitational wave detections, confirming an evolving view of the cosmic night. The detection, announced at a G7 meeting of science ministers in Turin, Italy, and in a paper in the journal Physical Review Letters, marked the successful debut of a new gravitational wave detector known as Virgo, built by a European collaboration and located in Cascina, close to Pisa, Italy.

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