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  • Washington Quake Rattles Hanford Observatory
    Observatory Shaded relief map courtesy of Ray Sterner Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory The temblor was too remote to cause any significant damage to the durable LIGO facilities or vacuum system But the delicate suspensions for the in vacuum optics of the two LIGO interferometers were more vulnerable These optics are suspended by fine wires and the shaking caused them to swing until they hit restraints designed to protect them from any catastrophic damage in just such an incident The optics for the 4 km interferometer were in the midst of being installed and for them this was a small annoyance requiring minor realignment But the quake caused a number of the 2 km interferometer optics to become misaligned to the extent that we will have to vent the vacuum system to make corrections This work is expected to take about two months and we will try to turn adversity into opportunity by making other planned modifications to the 2 km hardware at the same time Still this accident is a great disappointment Besides the time needed to realign the optics the LIGO Scientific Collaboration had scheduled the first engineering run involving interferometers at both sites for March 9

    Original URL path: http://www.ligo.caltech.edu/LIGO_web/news/0228quake.html (2015-06-02)
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  • First Lock at LIGO Hanford Observatory
    is divided into beams that enter the optical cavities in each arm When the interferometer is locked into resonance this light bounces back and forth up to fifty times in each arm exactly reproducing its path and spatial pattern on each round trip This causes a large build up of stored light in the long cavities Light leaking back from the two arms toward the beam splitter will interfere and return toward the laser because of the careful positioning of the mirrors by the control system Any imbalance between the two arms is immediately removed by adjusting the positions of the beam splitter and cavity mirror The adjustment forces can be measured to indicate the presence of any gravitational wave or other perturbing force acting on the instrument The recycling mirror traps the light returning toward the laser and sends it back toward the beam splitter causing the light on the beam splitter to grow much more powerful than the light emitted by the laser Interferometer Locked Video cameras monitor the build up of light in the interferometer which is displayed live in the control room In the photo at left the top two images on the screen show the light built up in the long cavities while the image on the lower left shows the built up recycled laser light at the beam splitter These images are dark in the absence of resonance when only the laser light shining on the recycling mirror shown at lower right on screen can be seen Also present in this photograph is Professor Rainer Weiss of MIT standing at center in front of screen who in 1973 originally proposed building a gravitational wave detector using laser interferometry He has worked decades toward this accomplishment Scientists in Triumphant Repose Achieving first lock required tight

    Original URL path: http://www.ligo.caltech.edu/LIGO_web/firstlock/ (2015-06-02)
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  • MG9 -- LIGO/LSC Presentations
    Collaboration Presentations PDF links require Acrobat Reader 3 0 or higher Barish B Gravitational Waves Laser Interferometric Devices Gonzalez G Angular Noise in GW Detectors Thermal Noise and Cross Couplings Raab F Status of LIGO Installation and Commissioning Savage R

    Original URL path: http://www.ligo.caltech.edu/LIGO_web/conferences/mg9_0700.html (2015-06-02)
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  • Brush Fire - LIGO Hanford Observatory
    dropping fire retardant on the most threatened structures By this time the winds had grown extremely strong with a wild fire out of control and bearing down on the observatory For a time the Y arm of LIGO served as a firebreak but the winds eventually blew the fire over the arm and it raced further across the Hanford site The fire started racing along the Y arm past the mid and end stations McCarthy and I went to the well at the Y end to actuate the fire recharge system and were able to inspect those buildings at that time The fire had burned out all the available fuel on the shrub steppe surrounding these structures without damage to the structures When we returned the fire was challenging the corner station I was able to inspect the site from the platform on the corner station roof and could see a line of fire advancing toward the X arm but then a wall of smoke and high winds drove me off the roof The combination of the extensive rock works we had installed surrounding our buildings and the firefighter s efforts prevailed as the fire burned down most of the grass and sage near the vertex without placing significant heat loads on the buildings themselves By this time I could see fire extending several miles to the east about 15 miles to the west about 10 miles south and ascending Rattlesnake Mountain The corner station was about the safest haven around so we remained there Aerial Drop of Fire Retardants As the fire advanced along the X arm burning away from the corner station the firefighters rapidly left our site I later found out that this was when the fire turned up the Yakima River valley headed for populated areas of West Richland and Benton City which were under evacuation orders We remained predominantly at the corner station inspecting fire conditions with binoculars as the fire burned along the X arm toward the end station The fire failed to jump the X arm and by midnight it had burned past the X end station We were able to drive out on the X arm at this time and inspect those buildings which looked OK The winds were shifting and the fire started to advance northerly again I expected it to start burning back toward the corner station along the north side of the X arm but I knew our roads would provide adequate fire breaks We decided conditions looked good enough to leave the observatory by driving north to the Wye barricade and then to Richland along Stevens Way Beam Tube Covered with Fire Retardants By morning the fire was mostly contained on the Hanford site but was burning near populated areas The population of these areas was evacuated to emergency shelters According to radio reports about 500 1000 firefighters were on the fire which had by now burned about 150 square miles of land We instructed staff to remain

    Original URL path: http://www.ligo.caltech.edu/LIGO_web/brushfire/fire062900.html (2015-06-02)
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  • Special Feature - LIGO's Inauguration
    the considerations to be addressed were similar how many guests who should be invited transportation lodging accommodations preparation of the site etc I was reminded of the remake of the movie Father of the Bride with Steve Martin If you ve seen it you ll surely remember Hank and Frank the wedding planners I realized we needed our own Hank and Frank to help us with all the logistics the contracting of outside services such as catering equipment and furniture rental etc We obtained recommendations for a number of event planners as Hank and Frank s profession is known and interviewed several Fortunately New Orleans is a national leader in hosting conventions and various catered affairs We were able to choose between the services of several highly experienced organizations and we selected the Beuerman Miller Group They suggested that our staging building shown at right which is basically a 12 000 square foot warehouse could be temporarily transformed into an auditorium a dining area a lobby and reception area as well as a kitchen and preparation area for the catering staff It turns out that there is a highly developed infrastructure of businesses in the New Orleans area whose mission is to provide precisely the services we required transforming even the roughest of venues into a comfortable location for a business conference a wedding and yes even a LIGO Inauguration Fortified by this powerful backing we began to make detailed plans One of the attractions of selecting the Beuerman Miller Group to assist with the planning was its experience working with media organizations We all felt that the inauguration would be a great opportunity to introduce LIGO to the general public and to further outreach programs in development at both LIGO Observatories To accomplish this would require a partnership of the Beuerman Miller Group with its connections to the local media and the Caltech Media Relations Office with its connections to the national press As the big day approached local television and radio stations conducted interviews and print journalists ran a number of related articles before during and after the event Guest list development was a never ending task from the very inception of planning until the day of the event Anyone who has ever planned a wedding can attest to this and anyone who ever will is hereby forewarned Our desire was to be as inclusive as possible within the limits of our capacity while giving emphasis to those industrial organizations that had been so crucial to making LIGO a reality In particular we wanted to express our appreciation to those of our partners who traveled from great distances Europe Australia and Asia to join us in celebrating November tenth was the day all the planning had to coalesce in a final day of preparation Our staging building was transformed Cinderella style into an auditorium and restaurant to accommodate one and all Some photos showing this transformation can be seen on our Livingston Photo Web Page Carpeting piping and

    Original URL path: http://www.ligo.caltech.edu/LIGO_web/200002news/200002liv.html (2015-06-02)
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  • LIGO Dedication - Web Broadcast
    Eisenstein Colwell Nov 12 Luncheon Program Baltimore Canizares Baker You need to have RealPlayer installed on your computer to view the videos RealPlayer 7 Basic is available free of charge from RealNetworks If you have problems using RealPlayer please see RealNetworks support site The videos are available in 3 speeds Use LAN for high speed connections campus or corporate LAN Use 80K for cable modem or ISDN connections Use 56K

    Original URL path: http://www.ligo.caltech.edu/LIGO_web/dedication/ (2015-06-02)
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  • LIGO news
    of construction and the first years of operation Further details can be found in summary November 1994 issued by the American Institute of Physics and a press release November 1994 issued by the National Science Foundation Construction in Louisiana begins June 1995 Dedication ceremony in Louisiana July 6 1995 LIGO contracts for vacuum equipment September 1995 LIGO plans to change to Nd YAG lasers October 1995 LIGO organizational changes Adobe

    Original URL path: http://www.ligo.caltech.edu/LIGO_web/9495news/9495news.html (2015-06-02)
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  • LIGO Meetings
    The page has moved If your browser does not automatically redirect you please follow this link

    Original URL path: http://www.ligo.caltech.edu/LIGO_web/conferences/meetings.html (2015-06-02)
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