EGO tube EGO - the European Gravitational Observatory - is located in the countryside near Pisa in the Commune of Cascina.
In order to ensure the long term scientific exploitation of the VIRGO interferometric antenna for gravitational waves detection as well as to foster European collaboration in this upcoming field, the VIRGO funding institututions (CNRS for France and INFN for Italy) have created a consortium called EGO (European Gravitational Observatory).

VIRGO is a 3-km long interferometer built in the framework of a French-Italian collaboration. Today, this collaboration involves 19 laboratories with more than 250 scientists in France, Italy and also in the Netherlands, Poland and Hungary as well.

EGO is established under the Italian law. Its governing body is the Council composed of members nominated by the funding institutions. The Council appoints a Director who is the legal representative and chief executive of EGO.

The Scientific and Technical Advisory Committee (STAC), advises the Council on scientific and technical activities carried out by the Consortium and the Virgo Collaboration. The STAC is composed of up to ten international scientific personalities.

EGO pursues these main objectives:

  • - ensure the commissioning of the VIRGO antenna for gravitational waves, its operation, maintenance and upgrades;
  • - create and run a computing center for the data analysis;
  • - ensure the maintenance of the site and its related infrastructures;
  • - promote R&D activities useful for the detection of gravitational waves;
  • - carry out any other research in the field of gravitation of common interest to the Members;
  • - promote co-operation in the field of the experimental and theoretical gravitational waves research in Europe;
  • - promote contacts among scientists and engineers, the dissemination of information and the advanced training of young researchers.