Scientists from the University of Birmingham’s Institute of Gravitational Wave Astronomy, who have worked on the Advanced LIGO project since its inception, have been celebrating the announcement.

Professor Alberto Vecchio said, “Neutron stars are quite remarkable objects: one and a half times the mass of the Sun, primarily in the form of neutrons is packed in a region of the size of Birmingham. I still find it hard to believe that we could observe, almost in real time, the final two minutes of life of a binary composed by two such bodies that eventually collided travelling at a third of the speed of light."

Professor Andreas Freise said, "The LIGO gravitational wave observatories have once again achieved a spectacular discovery. With precision laser interferometers that push boundaries of science and technology we record the faintest vibrations in the fabric of space and time. Detecting for the first time ever the signal of two neutron stars merging has been immensely exiting. We have just seen a glimpse of what gravitational wave detectors can reveal. I am looking forward to exciting times in astronomy."