Presentation #206.01 in the session “Science from the LIGO-Virgo Catalog of Gravitational Wave Events”.
Gravitational-wave measurements by LIGO and Virgo have added dozens of binaries to our catalog of compact-object mergers since the start of the third observing run. In this talk we will review the most exceptional discoveries. These include the most massive binary neutron star system to date, black holes that encroach on the pair-instability mass gap and have merged to form an intermediate-mass black hole, and an extreme mass-ratio coalescence with a secondary mass that is either the heaviest neutron star or lightest black hole ever detected. These discoveries stretch our understanding of the formation of compact objects and their astrophysical populations, opening exciting avenues of research in extreme matter, supernovae physics and binary evolution.