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Black hole ringdown: the importance of overtones

Giesler, Matthew and Isi, Maximiliano and Scheel, Mark A. and Teukolsky, Saul A. (2019) Black hole ringdown: the importance of overtones. Physical Review X, 9 (4). Art. No. 041060. ISSN 2160-3308. doi:10.1103/PhysRevX.9.041060.

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It is possible to infer the mass and spin of the remnant black hole from binary black hole mergers by comparing the ringdown gravitational wave signal to results from studies of perturbed Kerr spacetimes. Typically, these studies are based on the fundamental quasinormal mode of the dominant ℓ=m=2 harmonic. By modeling the ringdown of accurate numerical relativity simulations, we find, in agreement with previous findings, that the fundamental mode alone is insufficient to recover the true underlying mass and spin, unless the analysis is started very late in the ringdown. Including higher overtones associated with this ℓ=m=2 harmonic resolves this issue and provides an unbiased estimate of the true remnant parameters. Further, including overtones allows for the modeling of the ringdown signal for all times beyond the peak strain amplitude, indicating that the linear quasinormal regime starts much sooner than previously expected. This result implies that the spacetime is well described as a linearly perturbed black hole with a fixed mass and spin as early as the peak. A model for the ringdown beginning at the peak strain amplitude can exploit the higher signal-to-noise ratio in detectors, reducing uncertainties in the extracted remnant quantities. These results should be taken into consideration when testing the no-hair theorem.

Item Type:Article
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URLURL TypeDescription Paper
Giesler, Matthew0000-0003-2300-893X
Isi, Maximiliano0000-0001-8830-8672
Teukolsky, Saul A.0000-0001-9765-4526
Additional Information:© 2019 Published by the American Physical Society under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International license. Further distribution of this work must maintain attribution to the author(s) and the published article’s title, journal citation, and DOI. Received 13 April 2019; revised manuscript received 14 August 2019; published 23 December 2019. The authors thank Vijay Varma for many valuable discussions. We also thank Katerina Chatziioannou and Leo Stein for useful comments. M. G. and M. S. are supported by the Sherman Fairchild Foundation and NSF Grants No. PHY-1708212 and No. PHY-1708213 at Caltech. M. I. is a member of the LIGO Laboratory. LIGO was constructed by the California Institute of Technology and Massachusetts Institute of Technology with funding from the National Science Foundation and operates under Cooperative Agreement No. PHY-0757058. M. I. is supported by NASA through the NASA Hubble Fellowship Grant No. HST-HF2-51410.001-A awarded by the Space Telescope Science Institute, which is operated by the Association of Universities for Research in Astronomy, Inc., for NASA, under Contract No. NAS5-26555. S. T. is supported in part by the Sherman Fairchild Foundation and by NSF Grants No. PHY-1606654 and No. ACI-1713678 at Cornell. Computations were performed on the Wheeler cluster at Caltech, which is supported by the Sherman Fairchild Foundation and by Caltech. Computations were also performed on the Nemo computing cluster at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, supported by NSF Grant No. PHY-1626190.
Group:LIGO, TAPIR, Walter Burke Institute for Theoretical Physics, Astronomy Department
Funding AgencyGrant Number
Sherman Fairchild FoundationUNSPECIFIED
NASA Hubble FellowshipHST-HF2-51410.001-A
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Other Numbering System NameOther Numbering System ID
LIGO DocumentP1900076
Issue or Number:4
Record Number:CaltechAUTHORS:20190911-124456116
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Usage Policy:No commercial reproduction, distribution, display or performance rights in this work are provided.
ID Code:98575
Deposited By: Tony Diaz
Deposited On:11 Sep 2019 23:28
Last Modified:16 Nov 2021 17:40

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