December 2, 2021

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Gravitational wave ‘memories’ could help us find elusive cosmic strings

5 min read

Paul M. Sutter is an astrophysicist at The Ohio State University, host of Ask a Spaceman and “Space Radio,” and author of “Your Place in the Universe.” Sutter contributed this article to’s Expert Voices: Op-Ed & Insights.

Many theories of the early universe predict that the cosmos should be flooded with cracks in space-time, called cosmic strings, but no cosmic strings have been detected yet. Now, a new proposal suggests that we may need to look for them not through traditional astronomy, but through their gravitational-wave signature, which may persist in space-time long after the cosmic string has vanished.

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