|Gravitational waves (GW), emitted by catastrophic events in the Universe, are predicted by the Einstein General Relativity. GW direct detection, because of the tremendous technical difficulties to realize a detector enough sensitive to catch the faint space-time ripple caused by their passage, is still missing, but GW existence has been confirmed by an indirect evidence: the discovery and precise timing measurements of a binary pulsar system by Hulse and Taylor in 1970 showed that the decay of the orbit of this system over 10 years could be accurately accounted for by the emission of GW, as predicted by Einstein's theory. A Nobel Prize was awarded in 1993 to Hulse and Taylor for the discovery of this binary system and for the long lasting stringent measurement they made.
The direct detection of these emissions will start a new era for the Astronomy and Astrophysics, when it will be possible to investigate the origin of the Universe and exploit the information collected by electro-magnetic telescopes and particle detectors. Pursuing this aim, a series of giant interferometric detectors have been realized in Europe (Virgo and GEO600), in USA (LIGO) and in Japan (TAMA) and they reached an incredible sensitivity for the gravitational signal.
In the experimental research on gravitational wave a crucial period is approaching. The initial detectors, Virgo in Europe and LIGO in US, are currently under upgrade toward the so-called advanced or 2nd generation phase. When they will be operative, with a reasonable sensitivity, the first detection of the gravitational waves will be achieved. In parallel a new detector, (KAGRA, is under construction in Japan. This 3km-arm interferometer has a innovative design that, beyond the promise of a very competitive sensitivity, implements the key technologies of a 3rd generation gravitational wave observatory: an underground location and cryogenic optics. In Europe, the design of a 3rd generation gravitational wave observatory has been leaded by the ET project, a conceptual design study supported by the European Commission under FP7. The common aspects of the KAGRA detector and of the ET project pushed the Japanese and European scientists to collaborate in the design of the key components of the apparatuses. The ELiTES project is a joint collaboration between the Japanese and European scientists involved in ET and KAGRA, funded by the European Commission under FP7; ELiTES supports, for four years, the exchange of the KAGRA and ET scientists between Japan and Europe.
This event was the first general meeting of the ELiTES collaboration and the subjects, listed in the tracks, were discussed.