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Bernard Whiting - University of Florida. Gainesville, FL, US

Bernard Whiting

Professor | University of Florida

Gainesville, FL, UNITED STATES

Bernard Whiting’s research interests include theoretical and experimental approaches to the understanding of gravitational waves.


Bernard Whiting’s research interests include theoretical and experimental approaches to the detection and understanding of gravitational waves, including involvement in the global effort to measure gravitational radiation from collapsing stars and colliding astrophysical compact objects, noise detection and isolation, black hole physics, classical general relativity as well as a semi-classical approach to a quantum theory of gravity, perturbative and non-perturbative effects in black hole thermodynamics, work on the final state of black hole evaporation.

Areas of Expertise (4)

Gravitational Waves



Black Holes

Media Appearances (2)

UF researchers discover new type of black hole

UF News  online


UF researchers who helped confirm Einstein’s theory of gravitational waves observed a new type of black hole that challenges prior understanding of how the mysterious cosmic objects are formed across the universe.

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Gravitational waves detected 100 years after Einstein’s prediction

UF News  online


LIGO data analysis is a big part of Florida’s gravitational wave portfolio. UF physics professor Bernard Whiting has been active in the search for stochastic gravitational waves, relic gravitational waves produced a tiny fraction of a second after the formation of the universe in the big bang.

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Articles (5)

Observation of Gravitational Waves from Two Neutron Star–Black Hole Coalescences

The Astrophysical Journal Letters

R. Abbott, et al.


We report the observation of gravitational waves from two compact binary coalescences in LIGO's and Virgo's third observing run with properties consistent with neutron star–black hole (NSBH) binaries. The two events are named GW200105_162426 and GW200115_042309, abbreviated as GW200105 and GW200115; the first was observed by LIGO Livingston and Virgo and the second by all three LIGO–Virgo detectors.

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Constraints on Cosmic Strings Using Data from the Third Advanced LIGO–Virgo Observing Run

Physical Review Letters

R. Abbott, et al.


We search for gravitational-wave signals produced by cosmic strings in the Advanced LIGO and Virgo full O3 dataset. Search results are presented for gravitational waves produced by cosmic string loop features such as cusps, kinks, and, for the first time, kink-kink collisions. A template-based search for short-duration transient signals does not yield a detection.

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Tests of general relativity with binary black holes from the second LIGO-Virgo gravitational-wave transient catalog

Physical Review D

R. Abbott, et al.


Gravitational waves enable tests of general relativity in the highly dynamical and strong-field regime. Using events detected by LIGO-Virgo up to 1 October 2019, we evaluate the consistency of the data with predictions from the theory. We first establish that residuals from the best-fit waveform are consistent with detector noise, and that the low- and high-frequency parts of the signals are in agreement.

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GWTC-2: Compact Binary Coalescences Observed by LIGO and Virgo during the First Half of the Third Observing Run

Physical Review X

R. Abbott, et al.


We report on gravitational-wave discoveries from compact binary coalescences detected by Advanced LIGO and Advanced Virgo in the first half of the third observing run (O3a) between 1 April 2019 15 ∶ 00 UTC and 1 October 2019 15 ∶ 00 UTC. By imposing a false-alarm-rate threshold of two per year in each of the four search pipelines that constitute our search, we present 39 candidate gravitational-wave events. At this threshold, we expect a contamination fraction of less than 10%.

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The First-Order Velocity Memory Effect from Compact Binary Coalescing Sources

arXiv preprint arXiv:2106.05163

Atul K. Divakarla and Bernard F. Whiting


It has long been known that gravitational waves from compact binary coalescing sources are responsible for a first-order displacement memory effect experienced by a pair of freely falling test masses. This constant displacement is sourced from the non-vanishing final gravitational-wave strain present in the wave's after-zone, often referred to as the non-linear memory effect, and is of the same order of magnitude as the strain from the outgoing quadrupole radiation.

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