On September 7, the Körber Foundation is presenting this year’s Körber European Science Prize to the German physicist Karsten Danzmann. The 62-year-old will receive the prize for his research breakthrough in gravitational wave astronomy.
Together with an international team of physicists, Danzmann developed the key technology that makes it possible to capture Einstein’s theoretical gravitational waves for the first time. The high-precision laser technology opens previously hidden windows to the cosmos, since it has only been possible to explore the vastness of the universe through electromagnetic waves such as light, radio, X and Gama rays.
“Gravity has now sent us its own sort of messengers,” says Danzmann. “For this reason alone, the gravitational wave research promises numerous fundamental new insights, since 99 percent of the universe is dark and it has not been possible to investigate it until now.” Danzmann wants to use the funds from the Körber Prize to further refine the laser technology for ground-based detectors, among other projects.
Karsten Danzmann is Director of the Max Planck Institute for Gravitational Physics and teaches gravitational physics at the University of Hanover.
The Körber Foundation presents the Körber Prize to outstanding scientists each year. Over the last ten years, Körber Prize winners have included six researchers who were later awarded a Nobel Prize.
You can find out more on the Körber Foundation’s website.