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Adalberto Giazotto

Good bye to Adalberto Giazotto, the father of Virgo

The physicist Adalberto Giazotto, the pioneer of gravitational wave research and creator of the Virgo detector, built in Italy, at Cascina, in the Pisan countryside by INFN and the CNRS (Center National de la Recherche Scientifique) has died.

The president of the National Institute of Nuclear Physics, Fernando Ferroni, has commented, "People like Adalberto are able to change the story: he believed that the revelation of gravitational waves was a question that really needed an answer, while other people thought it was too difficult to go this way. He was enthusiastic, elegant, full of passion and irony: not only he had the idea to build an interferometer in the Pisan countryside, but also to chase for gravitational waves at low frequencies, idea first implemented by Virgo and later by LIGO. Finally he had the idea of ​​establishing a global network of interferometers, creating only one great scientific collaboration, that was the key of the success in chasing gravitational waves.

His story tells how science can drag you out because it tells you you to do things. Here are his words: "During a walk with Alain Brillet of the CNRS around the fountain of Minerva in the courtyards of the University Sapienza in Rome, the idea of ​​Virgo started to make his way. Virgo is unique and it had to go this way, because that was its destiny. It could not be otherwise: Virgo was and is the most beautiful experiment in the world."