Strong-lensing of Gravitational Waves by Galaxy Clusters

Graham P. Smith, Christopher Berry, Matteo Bianconi, Will M. Farr, Mathilde Jauzac, Richard Massey, Johan Richard, Andrew Robertson, Keren Sharon, Alberto Vecchio, John Veitch, G. González, R. Hynes

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

13 Scopus citations


Discovery of strongly-lensed gravitational wave (GW) sources will unveil binary compact objects at higher redshifts and lower intrinsic luminosities than is possible without lensing. Such systems will yield unprecedented constraints on the mass distribution in galaxy clusters, measurements of the polarization of GWs, tests of General Relativity, and constraints on the Hubble parameter. Excited by these prospects, and intrigued by the presence of so-called "heavy black holes" in the early detections by LIGO-Virgo, we commenced a search for strongly-lensed GWs and possible electromagnetic counterparts in the latter stages of the second LIGO observing run (O2). Here, we summarise our calculation of the detection rate of strongly-lensed GWs, describe our review of BBH detections from O1, outline our observing strategy in O2, summarize our follow-up observations of GW170814, and discuss the future prospects of detection.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)98-102
Number of pages5
JournalProceedings of the International Astronomical Union
Issue numberS338
StatePublished - 2017


  • galaxies: clusters: individual (MACS J0140.0-0555, MACS J1311.0-0310, RCS 0224-0002, Abell 3084, SMACS J0304.3- 4401)
  • gravitational lensing
  • gravitational waves

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Astronomy and Astrophysics
  • Space and Planetary Science


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