Not for the first time, the world of physics is abuzz with rumours that gravitational waves have been detected by scientists in the US.
Lawrence Krauss, a cosmologist at Arizona State university, tweeted that he had received independent confirmation of a rumour that has been in circulation for months, adding: “Gravitational waves may have been discovered!!”
The excitement centres on a longstanding experiment known as the Advanced Laser Interferometer Gravitational-Wave Observatory (Ligo) which uses detectors in Hanford, Washington, and Livingston, Louisiana to look for ripples in the fabric of spacetime.
According to the rumours, scientists on the team are in the process of writing up a paper that describes a gravitational wave signal. If such a signal exists and is verified, it would confirm one of the most dramatic predictions of Albert Einstein’s century-old theory of general relativity.