Sci­en­tists make waves with their pub­lic­ity ef­forts

China Daily (Canada) - - SHANGHAI -

sci­en­tists hailed the de­tec­tion of grav­i­ta­tional waves from the merg­ing of two neu­tron stars. Chi­nese ob­ser­va­tional tech­nol­ogy played key roles in this. An ar­ti­cle pub­lished by Bei­jing News com­ments:

Al­bert Ein­stein first fore­cast the ex­is­tence of grav­i­ta­tional waves, or the rip­ples in space and time, in 1916. Now they have been de­tected five times.

Un­like the past four times when the grav­i­ta­tional waves came from the merg­ing of two black holes, this is the first time that the waves have been pro­duced by the merg­ing of two neu­tron stars.

What makes the news more sig­nif­i­cant for China is that some of its as­tro­nom­i­cal ob­ser­va­tion tech­nolo­gies, in­clud­ing its first X-ray de­tec­tion satel­lite HXMT and South Pole au­to­matic te­le­scope AST3-2, have played key roles in de­tect­ing the grav­i­ta­tional waves this time. The Pur­ple Moun­tain Ob­ser­va­tory of the Chi­nese Academy of Sciences even re­leased the news to­gether with NASA.

Ac­tu­ally, Chi­nese as­tronomers have been par­tic­i­pat­ing in and lead­ing many grav­i­ta­tional wave projects. Their par­tic­i­pa­tion in the de­tec­tion of grav­i­ta­tional waves this time shows Chi­nese tech­nol­ogy is be­ing sharp­ened, and it will def­i­nitely make more progress in the fu­ture.

More im­por­tant, by shar­ing the news and knowl­edge with the pub­lic, the im­por­tance of sci­en­tific re­search can be bet­ter un­der­stood by peo­ple, which in turn re­sults in more fa­vor­able pol­icy sup­port for sci­en­tific re­search and en­cour­ages more tal­ented young peo­ple to em­bark on ca­reers in science.

The sci­en­tists and their in­sti­tu­tions that par­tic­i­pated in the de­tec­tion of grav­i­ta­tional waves this time have done very well by re­leas­ing the in­for­ma­tion on time and pub­lish­ing the news via so­cial me­dia. In the fu­ture, Chi­nese sci­en­tists could do more by fur­ther shar­ing their knowl­edge with the pub­lic, so that the lat­ter knows more about them and of­fers them more sup­port.

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