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Open AccessArticle

Development of Mirror Coatings for Gravitational Wave Detectors

SUPA, Institute of Thin Films, Sensors & Imaging, School of Engineering and Computing, University of the West of Scotland, Paisley PA1 2BE, UK
SUPA, Institute for Gravitational Research, School of Physics and Astronomy, University of Glasgow, Glasgow G12 8QQ, UK
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Desmond Gibson
Coatings 2016, 6(4), 61;
Received: 20 August 2016 / Revised: 20 October 2016 / Accepted: 25 October 2016 / Published: 16 November 2016
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Recent Advances in Optical Coatings)
The first detections of gravitational waves, GW150914 and GW151226, were associated with the coalescence of stellar mass black holes, heralding the opening of an entirely new way to observe the Universe. Many decades of development were invested to achieve the sensitivities required to observe gravitational waves, with peak strains associated with GW150914 at the level of 10−21. Gravitational wave detectors currently operate as modified Michelson interferometers, where thermal noise associated with the highly reflective mirror coatings sets a critical limit to the sensitivity of current and future instruments. This article presents an overview of the mirror coating development relevant to gravitational wave detection and the prospective for future developments in the field. View Full-Text
Keywords: gravitational waves; optical coatings; 1064 nm; ion beam deposition; molecular beam epitaxy gravitational waves; optical coatings; 1064 nm; ion beam deposition; molecular beam epitaxy
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Reid, S.; Martin, I.W. Development of Mirror Coatings for Gravitational Wave Detectors. Coatings 2016, 6, 61.

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