Characterization of low-significance gravitational-wave compact binary sources

Huang, Y., Middleton, H., Ng, K., Veitch, J. and Vitale, S. (2018) Characterization of low-significance gravitational-wave compact binary sources. Physical Review D, 98, 123021. (doi: 10.1103/PhysRevD.98.123021)

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Abstract

Advanced LIGO and Virgo have so far detected gravitational waves from 10 binary black hole mergers (BBH) and 1 binary neutron star merger (BNS). In the future, we expect the detection of many more marginal sources, since compact binary coalescences detectable by advanced ground-based instruments are roughly distributed uniformly in comoving volume. In this paper we simulate weak signals from compact binary coalescences of various morphologies and optimal network signal-to-noise ratios (henceforth SNRs), and analyze if and to which extent their parameters can be measured by advanced LIGO and Virgo in their third observing run. We show that subthreshold binary neutron stars, with SNRs below 12 (10) yield uncertainties in their sky position larger than 400 (700) deg2 (90% credible interval). The luminosity distance, which could be used to measure the Hubble constant with standard sirens, has relative uncertainties larger than 40% for BNSs and neutron star black hole mergers. For sources with SNRs below 8, it is not uncommon that the extrinsic parameters, sky position and distance, cannot be measured. Next, we look at the intrinsic parameters, masses and spins. We show that the detector-frame chirp mass can sometimes be measured with uncertainties below 1% even for sources at SNRs of 6, although multimodality is not uncommon and can significantly broaden the posteriors. The effective inspiral spin is best measured for neutron star black hole mergers, for which the uncertainties can be as low as ∼0.08 (∼0.2) at SNR 12 (8). The uncertainty is higher for systems with comparable component masses or lack of spin precession.

Item Type:Articles
Status:Published
Refereed:Yes
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Veitch, Dr John
Authors: Huang, Y., Middleton, H., Ng, K., Veitch, J., and Vitale, S.
College/School:College of Science and Engineering > School of Physics and Astronomy
Journal Name:Physical Review D
Publisher:American Physical Society
ISSN:2470-0010
ISSN (Online):2470-0029
Copyright Holders:Copyright © 2018 American Physical Society
First Published:First published in Physical Review D 98:123021
Publisher Policy:Reproduced in accordance with the copyright policy of the publisher
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Project CodeAward NoProject NamePrincipal InvestigatorFunder's NameFunder RefLead Dept
3011520Surveying black holes and neutron stars with gravitational wavesJohn VeitchScience and Technology Facilities Council (STFC)ST/K005014/2P&S - Physics & Astronomy