gravitational wave

noun Astronomy, Physics.
(in general relativity) a propagating wave of gravitational energy produced by accelerating masses, especially during catastrophic events, as the gravitational collapse of massive stars.
Also called gravity wave.


Origin:
1895–1900

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World English Dictionary
gravitational wave
 
n
physics another name for gravity wave

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
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Encyclopedia Britannica
Encyclopedia

gravitational wave

the transmission of variations in the gravitational field as waves. According to general relativity, the curvature of space-time is determined by the distribution of masses, while the motion of masses is determined by the curvature. In consequence, variations of the gravitational field should be transmitted from place to place as waves, just as variations of an electromagnetic field travel as waves. If the masses that are the source of a field change with time, they should radiate energy as waves of curvature of the field

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Encyclopedia Britannica, 2008. Encyclopedia Britannica Online.
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Example sentences
Tom suggested that it was a gravitational wave detector.
While the first bar is squeezed by a gravitational wave, the second will be
  stretched.
It's a fantastic book and still quite timely with gravitational wave astronomy
  finally becoming a reality.
The fundamentally new science of gravitational wave astronomy opens up a new
  window on the universe.
Images for gravitational wave
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