Gravitational Waves – A discovery that has shaken the world.

Gravitational Waves – A discovery that has shaken the world

by Francisco Lobo, of Instituto de Astrofísica e Ciências do Espaço (IA)

The direct observation of gravitational waves was celebrated by the 2017 Nobel Prize in Physics and is a triumph of science and technology that goes on dazzling, as was recently confirmed by the observation of the collision of two neutron stars in both windows of observation of the Universe: light and gravitational waves.

The discovery of gravitational waves is one of the last pieces for the confirmation of Einstein’s gravitation theory. This theory predicts that cataclysmic events, such as the collision of two black holes, may emit gravitational waves that propagate across the Universe.

In this session we will briefly review the history of this extraordinary discovery and discuss its importance and future application.

After the public talk, there will be a music and effects show projected on the planetary dome, and observations of the night sky with telescopes will run continuously until midnight, if weather conditions allow.

Noites no Observatório are organised by the Instituto de Astrofisica e Ciências do Espaço, in partnership with Planetário Calouste Gulbenkian – Centro de Ciência Viva.



2,5 hours

Free entrance


Although the entrance is free of charge, the access to the activity requires a registration here.

Due to the growing audience attending our activities and the fact that some people give up without notice, an email will be sent asking for confirmation. The lack of a reply within 48 hours after the reception of this confirmation request will be taken as a dropout and the registration will be cancelled. For this reason, please check your email inbox regularly in order to confirm your attendance in the activity.

The observation of the night sky depends on the weather conditions. As this is run outside, we recommend the use of warm clothes.

The talk is given regardless of the observations. The Calouste Gulbenkian Planetarium will open its doors half an hour before the event starts.

The public talk is given in Portuguese.

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Planetário Calouste Gulbenkian - Centro Ciência Viva
Museu de Marinha
Praça do Império

How to get there

By car
GPS – 38.698140, -9.208919

By bus
714, 727, 28, 729, 751 e 201

By tram

By boat
Estação fluvial de Belém ( Transtejo)

Live broadcasting

You can watch the event from home and ask questions to the speaker visiting this online address.

The online broadcasting of the talks has the support of the Fundação para a Computação Científica Nacional (FCCN), a division of the Fundação para a Ciência e a Tecnologia (FCT).