Laser Interferometer Gravitational-Wave Observatory

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Graduate and undergraduate students actively participate in the R&D program of LIGO.  While furthering their education in a research environment, they make important contributions to the progress of the LIGO project.  Students benefit from the diversity of scientific and engineering skills represented by the LIGO project's technical staff, including faculty, senior scientists, and engineers, who provide individual guidance and supervision to students.

Opportunities for students span a broad range of scientific and engineering disciplines, including: gravitational physics and astrophysics, metrology, optics, lasers, mechanical systems, controls, and electronics.  Students are involved in detector development, modeling and analysis, as well as in operations, observing, and data analysis.  Research takes place on the Caltech and MIT campuses and at the observatory sites at Hanford, Washington and Livingston, Louisiana.

In the top photo, an MIT graduate student works with the mode cleaner at Hanford Observatory. Below, REU students on a tour of Hanford Observatory pause for a group photo in front of the vacuum chambers.