An upper limit on the stochastic gravitational-wave background of cosmological origin

Abbott, B. et al. (2009) An upper limit on the stochastic gravitational-wave background of cosmological origin. Nature, 460(7258), pp. 990-994. (doi:10.1038/nature08278)

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Abstract

A stochastic background of gravitational waves is expected to arise from a superposition of a large number of unresolved gravitational-wave sources of astrophysical and cosmological origin. It should carry unique signatures from the earliest epochs in the evolution of the Universe, inaccessible to standard astrophysical observations1. Direct measurements of the amplitude of this background are therefore of fundamental importance for understanding the evolution of the Universe when it was younger than one minute. Here we report limits on the amplitude of the stochastic gravitational-wave background using the data from a two-year science run of the Laser Interferometer Gravitational-wave Observatory2 (LIGO). Our result constrains the energy density of the stochastic gravitational-wave background normalized by the critical energy density of the Universe, in the frequency band around 100 Hz, to be <6.9  10-6 at 95% confidence. The data rule out models of early Universe evolution with relatively large equation-of-state parameter3, as well as cosmic (super)string models with relatively small string tension4 that are favoured in some string theory models5. This search for the stochastic background improves on the indirect limits from Big Bang nucleosynthesis1, 6 and cosmic microwave background7 at 100 Hz.

Item Type:Articles
Status:Published
Refereed:Yes
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Grant, Mr Alastair and Messenger, Dr Christopher and Hammond, Professor Giles and Hild, Professor Stefan and Barr, Dr Bryan and Sorazu Lucio, Dr Borja and Reid, Professor Stuart and Edgar, Dr Matthew and Tokmakov, Dr Kirill and Veitch, Dr John and Plissi, Dr Michael and Heng, Professor Ik Siong and van Veggel, Dr Anna-Maria and Ward, Professor Henry and Newton, Dr Gavin and Torrie, Dr Calum and Cagnoli, Dr Gianpietro and Scott, Dr Jamie and Kumar, Mr Rahul and Rowan, Professor Sheila and Martin, Dr Iain and Robertson, Professor Norna and Cumming, Dr Alan and Cunningham, Dr William and Woan, Professor Graham and Nelson, Mr John and Hough, Professor James and Huttner, Dr Sabina and Bassiri, Mr Riccardo and Jones, Mr Russell and Strain, Professor Kenneth and Haughian, Dr Karen and Murray, Dr Peter and Pitkin, Dr Matthew and Barton, Dr Mark
Authors: Abbott, B., Abbott, R., Acernese, F., Adhikari, R., Ajith, P., Allen, B., Allen, G., Alshourbagy, M., Amin, R., Anderson, S., Anderson, W., Antonucci, F., Aoudia, S., Arain, M., Araya, M., Armandula, H., Armor, P., Arun, K., Aso, Y., Aston, S., Astone, P., Aufmuth, P., Aulbert, C., Babak, S., Baker, P., Ballardin, G., Ballmer, S., Barker, C., Barker, D., Barone, F., Barr, B., Barriga, P., Barsotti, L., Barsuglia, M., Barton, M.A., Bartos, I., Bassiri, R., Bastarrika, M., Bauer, T., Behnke, B., Beker, M., Benacquista, M., Betzwieser, J., Beyersdorf, P., Bigotta, S., Bilenko, I., Billingsley, G., Birindelli, S., Biswas, R., Bizouard, M., Black, E., Blackburn, J., Blackburn, L., Blair, D., Bland, B., Boccara, C., Bodiya, T., Bogue, L., Bondu, F., Bonelli, L., Bork, R., Boschi, V., Bose, S., Bosi, L., Braccini, S., Bradaschia, C., Brady, P., Braginsky, V., van den Brand, J., Brau, J., Bridges, D., Brillet, A., Brinkmann, M., Brisson, V., Van Den Broeck, C., Brooks, A., Brown, D., Brummit, A., Brunet, G., Bullington, A., Bulten, H., Buonanno, A., Burmeister, O., Buskulic, D., Byer, R., Cadonati, L., Cagnoli, G., Calloni, E., Camp, J., Campagna, E., Cannizzo, J., Cannon, K., Canuel, B., Cao, J., Carbognani, F., Cardenas, L., Caride, S., Castaldi, G., Caudill, S., Cavaglia, M., Cavalier, F., Cavalieri, R., Cella, G., Cepeda, C., Cesarini, E., Chalermsongsak, T., Chalkley, E., Charlton, P., Chassande-Mottin, E., Chatterji, S., Chelkowski, S., Chen, Y., Christensen, N., Chung, C., Clark, D., Clark, J., Clayton, J., Cleva, F., Coccia, E., Cokelaer, T., Colacino, C., Colas, J., Colla, A., Colombini, M., Conte, R., Cook, D., Corbitt, T., Corda, C., Cornish, N., Corsi, A., Coulon, J., Coward, D., Coyne, D., Creighton, J., Creighton, T., Cruise, A., Culter, R., Cumming, A., Cunningham, L., Cuoco, E., Danilishin, S., D'Antonio, S., Danzmann, K., Dari, A., Dattilo, V., Daudert, B., Davier, M., Davies, G., Daw, E., Day, R., De Rosa, R., Debra, D., Degallaix, J., del Prete, M., Dergachev, V., Desai, S., DeSalvo, R., Dhurandhar, S., Di Fiore, L., Di Lieto, A., Emilio, M., Di Virgilio, A., Diaz, M., Dietz, A., Donovan, F., Dooley, K., Doomes, E., Drago, M., Drever, R., Dueck, J., Duke, I., Dumas, J., Dwyer, J., Echols, C., Edgar, M., Effler, A., Ehrens, P., Ely, G., Espinoza, E., Etzel, T., Evans, T., Fafone, V., Fairhurst, S., Faltas, Y., Fan, Y., Fazi, D., Fehrmann, H., Ferrante, I., Fidecaro, F., Finn, L., Fiori, I., Flaminio, R., Flasch, K., Foley, S., Forrest, C., Fotopoulos, N., Fournier, J., Franc, J., Franzen, A., Frasca, S., Frasconi, F., Frede, M., Frei, M., Frei, Z., Freise, A., Frey, R., Fricke, T., Fritschel, P., Frolov, V., Fyffe, M., Galdi, V., Gammaitoni, L., Garofoli, J., Garufi, F., Genin, E., Gennai, A., Gholami, I., Giaime, J., Giampanis, S., Giardina, K., Giazotto, A., Goda, K., Goetz, E., Goggin, L., Gonzalez, G., Gorodetsky, M., Gosser, S., Gouaty, R., Granata, M., Granata, V., Grant, A., Gras, S., Gray, C., Gray, M., Greenhalgh, R., Gretarsson, A., Greverie, C., Grimaldi, F., Grosso, R., Grote, H., Grunewald, S., Guenther, M., Guidi, G., Gustafson, E., Gustafson, R., Hage, B., Hallam, J., Hammer, D., Hammond, G., Hanna, C., Hanson, J., Harms, J., Harry, G., Harry, I., Harstad, E., Haughian, K., Hayama, K., Heefner, J., Heitmann, H., Hello, P., Heng, I.S., Heptonstall, A., Hewitson, M., Hild, S., Hirose, E., Hoak, D., Hodge, K., Holt, K., Hosken, D., Hough, J., Hoyland, D., Huet, D., Hughey, B., Huttner, S., Ingram, D., Isogai, T., Ito, M., Ivanov, A., Johnson, B., Johnson, W., Jones, D., Jones, G., Jones, R., de la Jordana, L., Ju, L., Kalmus, P., Kalogera, V., Kandhasamy, S., Kanner, J., Kasprzyk, D., Katsavounidis, E., Kawabe, K., Kawamura, S., Kawazoe, F., Kells, W., Keppel, D., Khalaidovski, A., Khalili, F., Khan, R., Khazanov, E., King, P., Kissel, J., Klimenko, S., Kokeyama, K., Kondrashov, V., Kopparapu, R., Koranda, S., Kozak, D., Krishnan, B., Kumar, R., Kwee, P., La Penna, P., Lam, P., Landry, M., Lantz, B., Laval, M., Lazzarini, A., Lei, H., Lei, M., Leindecker, N., Leonor, I., Leroy, N., Letendre, N., Li, C., Lin, H., Lindquist, P., Littenberg, B., Lockerbie, N., Lodhia, D., Longo, M., Lorenzini, M., Loriette, V., Lormand, M., Losurdo, G., Lu, P., Lubinski, M., Lucianetti, A., Luck, H., Machenschalk, B., MacInnis, M., Mackowski, J., Mageswaran, M., Mailand, K., Majorana, E., Man, N., Mandel, I., Mandic, V., Mantovani, M., Marchesoni, F., Marion, F., Marka, S., Marka, Z., Markosyan, A., Markowitz, J., Maros, E., Marque, J., Martelli, F., Martin, I.W., Martin, R., Marx, J., Mason, K., Masserot, A., Matichard, F., Matone, L., Matzner, R., Mavalvala, N., McCarthy, R., McClelland, D., McGuire, S., McHugh, M., McIntyre, G., McKechan, D., McKenzie, K., Mehmet, M., Melatos, A., Melissinos, A., Mendell, G., Menendez, D., Menzinger, F., Mercer, R., Meshkov, S., Messenger, C., Meyer, M., Michel, C., Milano, L., Miller, J., Minelli, J., Minenkov, Y., Mino, Y., Mitrofanov, V., Mitselmakher, G., Mittleman, R., Miyakawa, O., Moe, B., Mohan, M., Mohanty, S., Mohapatra, S., Moreau, J., Moreno, G., Morgado, N., Morgia, A., Morioka, T., Mors, K., Mosca, S., Mossavi, K., Mours, B., MowLowry, C., Mueller, G., Muhammad, D., zur Muhlen, H., Mukherjee, S., Mukhopadhyay, H., Mullavey, A., Muller-Ebhardt, H., Munch, J., Murray, P., Myers, E., Myers, J., Nash, T., Nelson, J., Neri, I., Newton, G., Nishizawa, A., Nocera, F., Numata, K., Ochsner, E., O'Dell, J., Ogin, G., O'Reilly, B., O'Shaughnessy, R., Ottaway, D., Ottens, R., Overmier, H., Owen, B., Pagliaroli, G., Palomba, C., Pan, Y., Pankow, C., Paoletti, F., Papa, M., Parameshwaraiah, V., Pardi, S., Pasqualetti, A., Passaquieti, R., Passuello, D., Patel, P., Pedraza, M., Penn, S., Perreca, A., Persichetti, G., Pichot, M., Piergiovanni, F., Pierro, V., Pinard, L., Pinto, I., Pitkin, M., Pletsch, H., Plissi, M., Poggiani, R., Postiglione, F., Principe, M., Prix, R., Prodi, G., Prokhorov, L., Punken, O., Punturo, M., Puppo, P., Van der Putten, S., Quetschke, V., Raab, F., Rabaste, O., Rabeling, D., Radkins, H., Raffai, P., Raics, Z., Rainer, N., Rakhmanov, M., Rapagnani, P., Raymond, V., Re, V., Reed, C., Reed, T., Regimbau, T., Rehbein, H., Reid, S., Reitze, D., Ricci, F., Riesen, R., Riles, K., Rivera, B., Roberts, P., Robertson, N., Robinet, F., Robinson, C., Robinson, E., Rocchi, A., Roddy, S., Rolland, L., Rollins, J., Romano, J., Romano, R., Romie, J., Rover, C., Rowan, S., Rudiger, A., Ruggi, P., Russell, P., Ryan, K., Sakata, S., Salemi, F., Sandberg, V., Sannibale, V., Santamaria, L., Saraf, S., Sarin, P., Sassolas, B., Sathyaprakash, B., Sato, S., Satterthwaite, M., Saulson, P., Savage, R., Savov, P., Scanlan, M., Schilling, R., Schnabel, R., Schofield, R., Schulz, B., Schutz, B., Schwinberg, P., Scott, J., Scott, S., Searle, A., Sears, B., Seifert, F., Sellers, D., Sengupta, A., Sentenac, D., Sergeev, A., Shapiro, B., Shawhan, P., Shoemaker, D., Sibley, A., Siemens, X., Sigg, D., Sinha, S., Sintes, A., Slagmolen, B., Slutsky, J., van der Sluys, M., Smith, J., Smith, M., Smith, N., Somiya, K., Sorazu, B., Stein, A., Stein, L., Steplewski, S., Stochino, A., Stone, R., Strain, K., Strigin, S., Stroeer, A., Sturani, R., Stuver, A., Summerscales, T., Sun, K., Sung, M., Sutton, P., Swinkels, B., Szokoly, G., Talukder, D., Tang, L., Tanner, D., Tarabrin, S., Taylor, J., Taylor, R., Terenzi, R., Thacker, J., Thorne, K., Thorne, K., Thuring, A., Tokmakov, K.V., Toncelli, A., Tonelli, M., Torres, C., Torrie, C., Tournefier, E., Travasso, F., Traylor, G., Trias, M., Trummer, J., Ugolini, D., Ulmen, J., Urbanek, K., Vahlbruch, H., Vajente, G., Vallisneri, M., Vass, S., Vaulin, R., Vavoulidis, M., Vecchio, A., Vedovato, G., van Veggel, A.A., Veitch, J., Veitch, P., Veltkamp, C., Verkindt, D., Vetrano, F., Vicere, A., Villar, A., Vinet, J., Vocca, H., Vorvick, C., Vyachanin, S., Waldman, S., Wallace, L., Ward, H., Ward, R., Was, M., Weidner, A., Weinert, M., Weinstein, A., Weiss, R., Wen, L., Wen, S., Wette, K., Whelan, J., Whitcomb, S., Whiting, B., Wilkinson, C., Willems, P., Williams, H., Williams, L., Willke, B., Wilmut, I., Winkelmann, L., Winkler, W., Wipf, C., Wiseman, A., Woan, G., Wooley, R., Worden, J., Wu, W., Yakushin, I., Yamamoto, H., Yan, Z., Yoshida, S., Yvert, M., Zanolin, M., Zhang, J., Zhang, L., Zhao, C., Zotov, N., Zucker, M., and Zweizig, J.
College/School:College of Science and Engineering > School of Physics and Astronomy
Journal Name:Nature
Publisher:Nature Publishing Group
ISSN:0028-0836
ISSN (Online):1476-4687

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Project CodeAward NoProject NamePrincipal InvestigatorFunder's NameFunder RefLead Dept
459312Investigations in Gravitational Radiation.Sheila RowanScience & Technologies Facilities Council (STFC)ST/I001085/1Physics and Astronomy