The “Sounds of the Cosmos” in the Athens Science Festival
Start date: 01/02/2024
End date:29/02/2024

Would it be possible to «listen» to the dark and violent Universe? Can we find out what happens when two black holes, the most exotic cosmic objects, collide with speeds close to the speed of light?

In 1916, Albert Einstein predicts for the first time the existence of a new cosmic messenger, the gravitational waves; disturbances of spacetime that are produced from cataclysmic cosmic events and travel with the speed of light. 100 years later, in 2016, the first detection of gravitational waves from the merger of two black holes 1.4 billion light years away from us is announced! To detect them, researchers developed experimental techniques and technological innovations which allowed them to measure distortions of space 1000 times smaller than the size of a proton! 2 years later, in 2017, the LIGO detectors in USA and the Virgo detector in Italy, together with the Fermi gamma ray telescope and astronomical observatories across the Earth detect for the first time the merger of two neutron stars, the “goldmine” of the Universe! Today, with more than 90 detections of binary black hole and neutron star mergers, the era of Gravitational Wave Astronomy and Multimessenger Astronomy has begun and brings together a new way to perceive the Cosmos. A new scientific revolution, on par with the one started when Galileo turned his telescope to the skies in the 17th century has begun!

The ”Sounds of the Cosmos” interactive installation οpens its doors to the Athens Science Festival and aims to take participants to a voyage of scientific discovery ( Through playful learning and using interactive exhibits, we will discover how mass curves spacetime, will “experience” a gravitational wave, will discover the techniques of their detection, will explore the Virgo gravitational wave detector in Pisa, Italy, and learn how we can help researchers hunt for these faint cosmic whispers. The activity is organized by Ellinogermaniki Agogi ( in the framework of “Surrounded by Science” (GA: 101006349, )with the support of the European Gravitational Observatory (EGO) and the Virgo Collaboration ( 

Organizing team

Emmanouil Chaniotakis, Dr. Sofoklis Sotiriou, Dr. Thomas Oikonomou, Georgios Athanassopoulos (Ellinogermaniki Agogi)

Supported by

Dr Vincenzo Napolano, Giada Rossi, Elisa Velcani (EGO)

The installation was produced by the National Institute of Nuclear Physics of Italy (INFN)

Concept and Scientific direction: Vincenzo Napolano, Francesca Scianitti

Realization: Marco Barsottini και Alessandro Capozzo