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1.The relevant documentation on interferometric gravitational wave detectors can be found in the Advanced Virgo Technical Design Report available at and in Advanced LIGO Reference Design available at
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Great effort is currently being put into the development and construction of the second generation, advanced gravitational wave detectors, Advanced Virgo and Advanced LIGO. The development of new low thermal noise suspensions of mirrors, based on the experience gained in the previous experiments, is part of this task. Quasi-monolithic suspensions with fused silica wires avoid the problem of rubbing friction introduced by steel cradle arrangements by directly welding the wires to silica blocks bonded to the mirror. Moreover, the mechanical loss level introduced by silica fs ∼ 10−7 in thin fused silica wires) is by far less than the one associated with steel. The low frequency dynamical behaviour of the suspension can be computed and optimized, provided that the wire bending shape under pendulum motion is known. Due to the production process, fused silica wires are thicker near the two ends (necks), so that analytical bending computations are very complicated. We developed a tool to directly measure the low frequency bending parameters of fused silica wires, and we tested it on the wires produced for the Virgo+ monolithic suspensions. The working principle and a set of test measurements are presented and explained.


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