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Gravitational waves discovered 100 years after Einstein had predicted them

The Warsaw press conference (photo Marianna Zadrożna)
For the first time in history scientists have observed some “wrinkles” on the spacetime “fabric”. These gravitational waves have arrived to Earth from a distant point in the Universe where some catastrophic event had taken place. The observation has confirmed one of the most profound consequences of the General Theory of Relativity proposed by Einstein in 1915 and has opened up quite new perspectives in research on the Universe. ----

What is known on gravitational waves

Artistic vision of gravitational waves emitted by a system of two objects quickly orbiting around their centre of gravity (photo NASA)
Current status of research on gravitational waves was presented on a special press conference organized by Polish scientists on February 11, 2016 in Warsaw on the occasion of 100th anniversary since Albert Einstein predicted the waves. ----

Looking for optical transitions possibly related to candidates for gravitational waves

GRB 080319B – an unusual gamma burst observed in the Boötes constellation by the Pi of the Sky instruments (photo NASA/Swift/Stefan Immler, et al., public domain)
Polish scientists involved in the Pi of the Sky astronomical project are looking for optical transitions related to candidates for gravitational waves detected in data acquired by the Advanced LIGO and Advanced Virgo interferometers. The search is conducted within framework of the EM Follow-up project run by the LSC-Virgo collaboration. Data acquired by Pi of the Sky telescopes are analysed jointly by Pi of the Sky and Polgraw research teams. ----

MARIA has already helped more than 75.5 million patients

The MARIA nuclear reactor operated in NCBJ in Świerk (photo: Marcin Jakubowski, NCBJ)
Molibdenum-99 isotope widely applied in nuclear medicine to save human life is produced from uranium targets irradiated in research nuclear reactors. The NCBJ-operated MARIA reactor is covering nearly 20% of world demand for the targets. MARIA has already helped more than 75.5 million patients. ----

Getting closer to harness thermonuclear fusion

Visualization of plasma obtained in the Wendelstein 7-X device (source: IPP)
A new phase of research on Wendelstein 7-X (W7-X) was solemnly inaugurated on February 3, 2016. Poland participates in this multinational project to develop the world’s largest stellarator-type fusion device. Scientists hope that hydrogen plasma, the real research object of fusion research, will become available already this year. ----

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