Over the past three days, CIERA hosted the Fellows at the Frontier 2016 conference, aka FF2016 or #FF16CIERA. This conference was really broad in scope, and all the speakers gave really excellent talks.
Title: Black hole mergers: beyond general relativity
Abstract: One hundred years after the birth of general relativity, advanced LIGO has finally directly detected gravitational waves. The source: two black holes merging into one. Advanced LIGO will soon provide the opportunity to test GR, using gravitational waves, in the dynamical strong-field regime—a setting where GR has not yet been tested. GR has passed all weak-field tests with flying colors. Yet it should eventually break down, so we must look to the strong-field. To perform strong-field tests of GR, we need waveform models from theories beyond GR. To date there are no numerical simulations of black hole mergers in theories which differ from GR. The main obstacle is the mathematical one of “well-posedness.” I will explain how to overcome this obstacle, and demonstrate the success of this approach by presenting the first numerical simulations of black hole mergers in a theory beyond GR.
The conference also had the highest fraction of active tweeps of any astro/physics conference I’ve attended. You can find a list of the FF2016 tweeps here, and see what they tweeted about during the conference here.