271 research outputs found

    Numerical simulations of compact object binaries

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    Coalescing compact object binaries consisting of black holes and/or Neutron stars are a prime target for ground-based gravitational wave detectors. This article reviews the status of numerical simulations of these systems, with an emphasis on recent progress.Comment: Minor corrections, including typos and gramma

    Measuring neutron star tidal deformability with Advanced LIGO: a Bayesian analysis of neutron star - black hole binary observations

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    The discovery of gravitational waves (GW) by Advanced LIGO has ushered us into an era of observational GW astrophysics. Compact binaries remain the primary target sources for LIGO, of which neutron star-black hole (NSBH) binaries form an important subset. GWs from NSBH sources carry signatures of (a) the tidal distortion of the neutron star by its companion black hole during inspiral, and (b) its potential tidal disruption near merger. In this paper, we present a Bayesian study of the measurability of neutron star tidal deformability ΛNS(R/M)5\Lambda_\mathrm{NS}\propto (R/M)^{5} using observation(s) of inspiral-merger GW signals from disruptive NSBH coalescences, taking into account the crucial effect of black hole spins. First, we find that if non-tidal templates are used to estimate source parameters for an NSBH signal, the bias introduced in the estimation of non-tidal physical parameters will only be significant for loud signals with signal-to-noise ratios >30> 30. For similarly loud signals, we also find that we can begin to put interesting constraints on ΛNS\Lambda_\mathrm{NS} (factor of 1-2) with individual observations. Next, we study how a population of realistic NSBH detections will improve our measurement of neutron star tidal deformability. For astrophysical populations of disruptivedisruptive NSBH mergers, we find 20-35 events to be sufficient to constrain ΛNS\Lambda_\mathrm{NS} within ±2550%\pm 25-50\%, depending on the chosen equation of state. In this we also assume that LIGO will detect black holes with masses within the astrophysical massmass-gapgap. If the mass-gap remains preserved in NSBHs detected by LIGO, we estimate that 25%25\% additionaladditional detections will furnish comparable tidal measurement accuracy. In both cases, we find that the loudest 5-10 events to provide most of the tidal information, thereby facilitating targeted follow-ups of NSBHs in the upcoming LIGO-Virgo runs.Comment: 21 pages, 17 figure

    Suitability of post-Newtonian/numerical-relativity hybrid waveforms for gravitational wave detectors

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    This article presents a study of the sufficient accuracy of post-Newtonian and numerical relativity waveforms for the most demanding usage case: parameter estimation of strong sources in advanced gravitational wave detectors. For black hole binaries, these detectors require accurate waveform models which can be constructed by fusing an analytical post-Newtonian inspiral waveform with a numerical relativity merger-ringdown waveform. We perform a comprehensive analysis of errors that enter such "hybrid waveforms". We find that the post-Newtonian waveform must be aligned with the numerical relativity waveform to exquisite accuracy, about 1/100 of a gravitational wave cycle. Phase errors in the inspiral phase of the numerical relativity simulation must be controlled to less than about 0.1rad. (These numbers apply to moderately optimistic estimates about the number of GW sources; exceptionally strong signals require even smaller errors.) The dominant source of error arises from the inaccuracy of the investigated post-Newtonian Taylor-approximants. Using our error criterium, even at 3.5-th post-Newtonian order, hybridization has to be performed significantly before the start of the longest currently available numerical waveforms which cover 30 gravitational wave cycles. The current investigation is limited to the equal-mass, zero-spin case and does not take into account calibration errors of the gravitational wave detectors.Comment: 32 pages, 12 figures, submitted to CQG for the NRDA2010 conference proceedings, added new figure (fig. 5) since last versio

    Compact Binary Waveform Center-of-Mass Corrections

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    We present a detailed study of the center-of-mass (c.m.) motion seen in simulations produced by the Simulating eXtreme Spacetimes (SXS) collaboration. We investigate potential physical sources for the large c.m. motion in binary black hole simulations and find that a significant fraction of the c.m. motion cannot be explained physically, thus concluding that it is largely a gauge effect. These large c.m. displacements cause mode mixing in the gravitational waveform, most easily recognized as amplitude oscillations caused by the dominant (2,±\pm2) modes mixing into subdominant modes. This mixing does not diminish with increasing distance from the source; it is present even in asymptotic waveforms, regardless of the method of data extraction. We describe the current c.m.-correction method used by the SXS collaboration, which is based on counteracting the motion of the c.m. as measured by the trajectories of the apparent horizons in the simulations, and investigate potential methods to improve that correction to the waveform. We also present a complementary method for computing an optimal c.m. correction or evaluating any other c.m. transformation based solely on the asymptotic waveform data.Comment: 20 pages, 15 figure

    High accuracy simulations of black hole binaries:spins anti-aligned with the orbital angular momentum

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    High-accuracy binary black hole simulations are presented for black holes with spins anti-aligned with the orbital angular momentum. The particular case studied represents an equal-mass binary with spins of equal magnitude S/m^2=0.43757 \pm 0.00001. The system has initial orbital eccentricity ~4e-5, and is evolved through 10.6 orbits plus merger and ringdown. The remnant mass and spin are M_f=(0.961109 \pm 0.000003)M and S_f/M_f^2=0.54781 \pm 0.00001, respectively, where M is the mass during early inspiral. The gravitational waveforms have accumulated numerical phase errors of <~ 0.1 radians without any time or phase shifts, and <~ 0.01 radians when the waveforms are aligned with suitable time and phase shifts. The waveform is extrapolated to infinity using a procedure accurate to <~ 0.01 radians in phase, and the extrapolated waveform differs by up to 0.13 radians in phase and about one percent in amplitude from the waveform extracted at finite radius r=350M. The simulations employ different choices for the constraint damping parameters in the wave zone; this greatly reduces the effects of junk radiation, allowing the extraction of a clean gravitational wave signal even very early in the simulation.Comment: 14 pages, 15 figure

    Numerical Relativity Injection Infrastructure

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    This document describes the new Numerical Relativity (NR) injection infrastructure in the LIGO Algorithms Library (LAL), which henceforth allows for the usage of NR waveforms as a discrete waveform approximant in LAL. With this new interface, NR waveforms provided in the described format can directly be used as simulated GW signals ("injections") for data analyses, which include parameter estimation, searches, hardware injections etc. As opposed to the previous infrastructure, this new interface natively handles sub-dominant modes and waveforms from numerical simulations of precessing binary black holes, making them directly accessible to LIGO analyses. To correctly handle precessing simulations, the new NR injection infrastructure internally transforms the NR data into the coordinate frame convention used in LAL.Comment: 20 pages, 2 figures, technical repor

    Stability of exact force-free electrodynamic solutions and scattering from spacetime curvature

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    Recently, a family of exact force-free electrodynamic (FFE) solutions was given by Brennan, Gralla and Jacobson, which generalizes earlier solutions by Michel, Menon and Dermer, and other authors. These solutions have been proposed as useful models for describing the outer magnetosphere of conducting stars. As with any exact analytical solution that aspires to describe actual physical systems, it is vitally important that the solution possess the necessary stability. In this paper, we show via fully nonlinear numerical simulations that the aforementioned FFE solutions, despite being highly special in their properties, are nonetheless stable under small perturbations. Through this study, we also introduce a three-dimensional pseudospectral relativistic FFE code that achieves exponential convergence for smooth test cases, as well as two additional well-posed FFE evolution systems in the appendix that have desirable mathematical properties. Furthermore, we provide an explicit analysis that demonstrates how propagation along degenerate principal null directions of the spacetime curvature tensor simplifies scattering, thereby providing an intuitive understanding of why these exact solutions are tractable, i.e. why they are not backscattered by spacetime curvature.Comment: 33 pages, 21 figures; V2 updated to match published versio

    Black hole initial data on hyperboloidal slices

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    We generalize Bowen-York black hole initial data to hyperboloidal constant mean curvature slices which extend to future null infinity. We solve this initial value problem numerically for several cases, including unequal mass binary black holes with spins and boosts. The singularity at null infinity in the Hamiltonian constraint associated with a constant mean curvature hypersurface does not pose any particular difficulties. The inner boundaries of our slices are minimal surfaces. Trumpet configurations are explored both analytically and numerically.Comment: version for publication in Phys. Rev.