Since 2015, scientists have observed ripples in spacetime, called gravitational waves, produced when cosmic beasts such as black holes merge. Each of the 50 large circles below represents one of these mergers.

How to read this chart

Circles are scaled to the mass of the object they represent. The outer circle, representing the mass of the merger result, is scaled up to allow comparison across events.

Hover or click on any merger to see more information. Events marked in blue have extra detail.

Type of Merger

black hole / black hole

Original & Final Masses

in solar masses

34 M

Source: LIGO Scientific Collaboration and Virgo Collaboration

Created by Nadieh Bremer |