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India’s 1st LIGO Project to come up in Hingoli, Maharashtra

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India's First Gravitational Waves Research Facility

On 17th November 2021, Maharashtra’s Hingoli revenue department allotted 225 hectares of land at Dudhala in Aundha Nagnath town for setting-up India’s 1st Laser Interferometer Gravitational-Wave Observatory (LIGO) project.

Aim – To Study Gravitational waves arriving to earth from cataclysmic events in the distant universe, and carry out experiments on them.

i.This comes at the backdrop of the 2016 ‘in principle’ approval given by the Indian government for the mega LIGO-India project.

About LIGO-India Project:

i. LIGO-India project is a part of the 3 Gravitational Wave detectors of LIGO, of which 2 are currently operational at USA – Hanford in Washington & Livingston in Louisiana.

ii. LIGO-India project will be built by the Department of Atomic Energy (DAE) and the Department of Science and Technology (DST), Government of India, with a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the National Science Foundation (NSF), USA.

iii. 4 other Coordinating Indian Research Institutes for LIGO-India project:

  • Inter-University Centre for Astronomy and Astrophysics (IUCAA), Pune, Maharashtra
  • Department of Atomic Energy’s Directorate of Construction, Services & Estate Management(DCSEM) -Mumbai, Maharashtra
  • Institute for Plasma Research (IPR), Gandhinagar, Gujarat
  • Raja Ramanna Centre for Advanced Technology (RRCAT), Indore, Madhya Pradesh

Recent Related News:

In January 2021, Patna Meteorological Observatory was conferred with ‘Centennial Observing Station Status’ by World Meteorological Organization, for conducting long-term meteorological observation exceeding over 100 years

Other Space Observatories in India:

  • Mount Abu InfraRed Observatory (MIRO) – Mount Abu, Rajasthan 
  • Devasthal Optical Telescope – Nainital, Uttarakhand
  • Giant Metrewave Radio Telescope (GMRT) – Khodad, Maharashtra
  • Stargate Observatory – Bhimtal, Uttarakhand