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First direct comparison of nondisrupting neutron star-black hole and binary black hole merger simulations

Foucart, Francois and Buchman, Luisa and Duez, Matthew D. and Grudich, Michael and Kidder, Lawrence E. and MacDonald, Ilana and Mroue, Abdul and Pfeiffer, Harald P. and Scheel, Mark A. and Szilagyi, Béla (2013) First direct comparison of nondisrupting neutron star-black hole and binary black hole merger simulations. Physical Review D, 88 (6). Art. No. 064017. ISSN 2470-0010. doi:10.1103/PhysRevD.88.064017.

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We present the first direct comparison of numerical simulations of neutron star-black hole and black hole-black hole mergers in full general relativity. We focus on a configuration with nonspinning objects and within the most likely range of mass ratio for neutron star-black hole systems (q = 6). In this region of the parameter space, the neutron star is not tidally disrupted prior to merger, and we show that the two types of mergers appear remarkably similar. The effect of the presence of a neutron star on the gravitational wave signal is not only undetectable by the next generation of gravitational wave detectors, but also too small to be measured in the numerical simulations: even the plunge, merger and ringdown signals appear in perfect agreement for both types of binaries. The characteristics of the post-merger remnants are equally similar, with the masses of the final black holes agreeing within δM_(BH) <5 × 10^(-4)M_(BH) and their dimensionless spins within δχ_(BH)<10^(-3). The rate of periastron advance in the mixed binary agrees with previously published binary black hole results, and we use the inspiral waveforms to place constraints on the accuracy of our numerical simulations independent of algorithmic choices made for each type of binary. Overall, our results indicate that nondisrupting neutron star-black hole mergers are exceptionally well modeled by black hole-black hole mergers, and that given the absence of mass ejection, accretion disk formation, or differences in the gravitational wave signals, only electromagnetic precursors could prove the presence of a neutron star in low-spin systems of total mass ∼10 M_⊙, at least until the advent of gravitational wave detectors with a sensitivity comparable to that of the proposed Einstein Telescope.

Item Type:Article
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URLURL TypeDescription Paper
Foucart, Francois0000-0003-4617-4738
Duez, Matthew D.0000-0002-0050-1783
Kidder, Lawrence E.0000-0001-5392-7342
Pfeiffer, Harald P.0000-0001-9288-519X
Alternate Title:First direct comparison of non-disrupting neutron star-black hole and binary black hole merger
Additional Information:© 2013 American Physical Society. Received 30 July 2013; published 9 September 2013. The authors wish to thank Tanja Hinderer, Alessandra Buonanno and Andrea Taracchini for useful discussions regarding tidal effects in NSBH binaries, the members of the SXS collaboration for their suggestions and support over the course of this project, Ben Lackey for discussions regarding the detectability of finite-size effects in gravitational wave signals, and Andy Bohn for comments on an earlier version of this manuscript. M. D. acknowledges support through NASA Grant No. NNX11AC37G and NSF Grant No. PHY-1068243. H. P., F. F, A. M, I. M. and M. G. gratefully acknowledges support from the NSERC of Canada, from the Canada Research Chairs Program, and from the Canadian Institute for Advanced Research. L. K. gratefully acknowledges support from the Sherman Fairchild Foundation, and from NSF Grants No. PHY-0969111 and No. PHY-1005426. M. S., and B. S. are partially supported by NASA ATP Grant No. NNX11AC37G and NSF Grants No. PHY-1151197, No. PHY-1068881, and No. PHY-1005655, by the Sherman Fairchild Foundation, and the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation. Computations were performed on the GPC supercomputer at the SciNet HPC Consortium [57] funded by the Canada Foundation for Innovation, the Government of Ontario, Ontario Research Fund–Research Excellence, and the University of Toronto; on Briareé from University of Montreal, under the administration of Calcul Qubec and Compute Canada, supported by Canadian Foundation for Innovation (CFI), Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada (NSERC), NanoQuébec, RMGA and the Fonds de recherche du Québe-Nature et technologies (FRQ-NT); and on the Zwicky cluster at Caltech, supported by the Sherman Fairchild Foundation and by NSF Award PHY-0960291.
Funding AgencyGrant Number
Canada Research Chairs ProgramUNSPECIFIED
Canadian Institute for Advanced ResearchUNSPECIFIED
Sherman Fairchild FoundationUNSPECIFIED
Alfred P. Sloan FoundationUNSPECIFIED
Canada Foundation for Innovation (CFI)UNSPECIFIED
Government of OntarioUNSPECIFIED
Ontario Research Fund–Research ExcellenceUNSPECIFIED
University of TorontoUNSPECIFIED
University of MontrealUNSPECIFIED
Fonds de recherche du Québe-Nature et technologies (FRQ-NT)UNSPECIFIED
Issue or Number:6
Classification Code:PACS: 04.25.dg, 04.30.Db, 04.40.Dg
Record Number:CaltechAUTHORS:20131021-114529235
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Official Citation:First direct comparison of nondisrupting neutron star-black hole and binary black hole merger simulations Francois Foucart, Luisa Buchman, Matthew D. Duez, Michael Grudich, Lawrence E. Kidder, Ilana MacDonald, Abdul Mroue, Harald P. Pfeiffer, Mark A. Scheel, and Bela Szilagyi Published 9 September 2013 (13 pages) 064017
Usage Policy:No commercial reproduction, distribution, display or performance rights in this work are provided.
ID Code:41992
Deposited By: Ruth Sustaita
Deposited On:21 Oct 2013 20:57
Last Modified:10 Nov 2021 04:36

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