SU Crush Powers NSF-funded LIGO Scientific Collaboration

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In 1916

Albert EinsteinAlbert Einstein predicted the existence of gravitational wave in his well-known Theory of General Relativity.  Moreover, Einstein predicted that a change in gravitational field will travel through the universe at the speed of light. It is exactly these changes in the gravitational field that are gravitational waves.  An overview on Gravitational Waves can be found here.

In 2016

Laser Interferometer Gravitational Wave Observatory (LIGO)The Laser Interferometer Gravitational Wave Observatory (LIGO) installations in in Hanford Washington and Livingston Louisiana completed their first and long-awaited “observing run”.  This 106-day run dubbed “O1”  concluded on January 12, 2016 at 8:00 a.m. Pacific standard time.  The result?  Data.  Lots of data.


Crush Visualization


Terabytes of LIGO detector data being processed within Crush

Learn more about Crush.

Syracuse University Gravitational Wave Group


Meet the Researchers

Our group is a member of the LIGO Scientific Collaboration and is actively involved with the search for gravitational waves using data from the LIGO, GEO600, and Virgo gravitational-wave detectors. We also pursue research into gravitational-wave phenomenology and source modeling, in collaboration with our colleagues in numerical relativity.


Syracuse University Gravitational Wave Group

Peter Saulson

Peter SaulsonMartin A. Pomerantz ’37 Professor of Physics – College of Arts and Sciences”

Research Interests

  • Gravitational wave detection strategies.
  • Heuristics of gravitational wave detectors.
  • Thermal noise in mechanical experiments.
  • Internal friction in materials.


Duncan Brown

Duncan BrownCharles Brightman Endowed Professor of Physics – College of Arts and Sciences

Research Interests

  • Gravitational-wave astronomy and astrophysics.
  • Searching for gravitational waves from compact binary coalesence in data from the LIGO and VIRGO observatories.
  • Numerical relativity and its implications for gravitational wave detection.
  • Third-generation gravitational-wave detectors.
  • High-performance computing


Stefan Ballmer

Stephen BalmerAssistant professor of physics – College of Arts and Sciences

Research Interests

  • Third-generation gravitational-wave detector technology.
  • Quantum control of macroscopic objects.
  • Commissioning of Advanced LIGO.
  • Searching for a stochastic background of gravitational waves with Advanced LIGO.