October 4, 2017: An Andrews University professor and more than 20 students have taken part in research on gravitational waves that was awarded the Nobel Prize in Physics yesterday.
According to a news story on the Andrews website, Physics professor Tiffany Summerscales and her students represented Andrews in a group of 103 academic institutions in 18 countries that took part in the Laser Interferometer Gravitational-Wave Observatory (LIGO) Scientific Collaboration.
Three of the collaboration’s leaders—Rainer Weiss (Massachusetts Institute of Technology), Kip Thorne and Barry C Barish (both of Caltech)—were the named recipients of the Nobel Prize in Physics.
The research achieved confirmation of Albert Einstein’s theory from 1916, that gravitational waves travel across the universe at the speed of light. Einstein’s theory was that the waves stretch space in one direction and shrink it in the other which is at right angles.
“We’re excited to acknowledge and celebrate the brilliance, determination and skill of Tiffany Summerscales and our students as part of that LIGO Scientific Collaboration that resulted in the landmark Gravitational Waves discoveries that made today’s Nobel recognition possible,” said chair of the AU Department of Physics and STEM Division, Margarita Mattingly.
“At Andrews, we talk about how important it is to Learn Deeply, to emphasize meaningful creativity and scholarship as an essential part of our students’ studies while they are here,” said Andrews President, Andrea Luxton. “Professor Summerscales’ work on this Nobel Prize winning effort, accompanied by the work of dedicated students over more than a decade, represents the very best of this commitment on the part of the university to offer transforming education and research, accomplished alongside the very best and most dedicated teachers who make up our faculty.”
Andrews University is an Adventist university based in Berrien Springs, Michigan. Known as Battle Creek College when it was founded in 1874, it was the first Adventist higher education facility. It is also the flagship university of the Seventh-day Adventist school system.