Barry Barish, the Physicist Who Discovered Gravitational Waves, to Hold Sapienza Fermi Chair 2019-20

Barry Barish, Nobel Prize for Physics 2017, will hold the Fermi Chair Lessons 2019-20. The first lesson, open to students and all interested parties, will be held on October 10

This year, Barry Barish, Nobel Prize for Physics 2017, will be amongst the faculty at Sapienza University. Prof. Barish, who was awarded the Nobel Prize for his fundamental contribution to the first detection of gravitational waves, will hold the Fermi Chair 2019-20 Lessons.

The course, which will be entitled “Large Infrastructure and the Frontiers of Physics,” will consist of 15 lessons that will be held in the Amaldi Lecture Hall in the “Guglielmo Marconi” Physics Building (October 10, 2019 – March 19, 2020).

The first lesson will be held on Gravitational Wave Day 2019, an initiative organised by the Amaldi Research Centre to mark the identification of gravitation waves that took place on September 14, 2015, a discovery that earned Prof. Barish the Nobel Prize together with Rainer Weiss e Kip Thorne.

In particular, Prof. Barish was recognised as having provided a fundamental contribution to the development of the LIGO Sensor (Laser Interferometer Gravitational-Wave Observatory) which, together with the European VIRGO interferometer (and Sapienza’s participation in the collection and analysis of data), allowed the observation of space-time vibration. The latter was caused by the most violent phenomena that have ever occurred in the universe (the collision of black holes, the explosion of supernovae or the Big Bang that originated the universe) known as gravitational waves.

Predicted by Albert Einstein, over one century ago, gravitational waves had never been observed directly. Their identification represents a ground-breaking discovery and the confirmation of the Theory of Relativity. A new window has been opened onto the universe.

This is a great opportunity for the Sapienza Community that will have the possibility to learn more about some of the most intriguing mysteries of Physics: from black holes to gravitational waves, from the primordial universe to the new frontiers of physical investigation.

Since 2011, the year in which the Italian Ministry of Education, University and Research created the “Enrico Fermi” Chair, Sapienza University has invited global experts to illustrate the frontiers of knowledge, celebrate the genius of Enrico Fermi and the Italian scientific tradition, and promote modern Physics.


Thursday, 03 October 2019

© Sapienza Università di Roma - Piazzale Aldo Moro 5, 00185 Roma - (+39) 06 49911 - CF 80209930587 PI 02133771002