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Length Sensing and Control of a Prototype Advanced Interferometric Gravitational Wave Detector


Ward, Robert Lawrence (2010) Length Sensing and Control of a Prototype Advanced Interferometric Gravitational Wave Detector. Dissertation (Ph.D.), California Institute of Technology. doi:10.7907/20SX-2935.


There is a worldwide effort to directly detect gravitational radiation. The Laser Interferometer Gravitational Wave Observatory (LIGO) operates three kilometer-scale interferometric gravitational wave detectors at two sites: two in Hanford, WA and one in Livingston, LA. A significant upgrade, called Advanced LIGO, is planned for these detectors. The core work of this thesis involves using a 40m prototype interferometer on the Caltech campus to study length and sensing and control techniques for Advanced LIGO. The principal results are the development of a lock acquisition protocol for an advanced detector and a comparison of noise couplings between two gravitational wave signal extraction techniques, called RF and DC readout.

In addition, a search in LIGO data was carried out for broadband, long-duration stochastic gravitational waves emitted from point sources. The results of this search are presented.

Item Type:Thesis (Dissertation (Ph.D.))
Subject Keywords:gravitational wave detection; laser interferometers; lock acquisition; LIGO;
Degree Grantor:California Institute of Technology
Division:Physics, Mathematics and Astronomy
Major Option:Physics
Thesis Availability:Public (worldwide access)
Research Advisor(s):
  • Weinstein, Alan Jay
Thesis Committee:
  • Weinstein, Alan Jay (chair)
  • Adhikari, Rana
  • Chen, Yanbei
  • Schwab, Keith C.
Defense Date:24 February 2010
Funding AgencyGrant Number
National Science FoundationPHY-0757058
National Science FoundationGraduate Research Fellowship
Projects:LIGO - Laser Interferometer Gravitational Wave Observatory
Record Number:CaltechTHESIS:05252010-134621351
Persistent URL:
Default Usage Policy:No commercial reproduction, distribution, display or performance rights in this work are provided.
ID Code:5836
Deposited By: Robert Ward
Deposited On:26 May 2010 22:03
Last Modified:26 Oct 2021 18:39

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