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Published December 15, 2000 | Published
Journal Article Open

Thermoelastic noise and homogeneous thermal noise in finite sized gravitational-wave test masses


An analysis is given of thermoelastic noise (thermal noise due to thermoelastic dissipation) in finite sized test masses of laser interferometer gravitational-wave detectors. Finite-size effects increase the thermoelastic noise by a modest amount; for example, for the sapphire test masses tentatively planned for LIGO-II and plausible beam-spot radii, the increase is ≲10 percent. As a side issue, errors are pointed out in the currently used formulas for conventional, homogeneous thermal noise (noise associated with dissipation which is homogeneous and described by an imaginary part of the Young's modulus) in finite sized test masses. Correction of these errors increases the homogeneous thermal noise by ≲5 percent for LIGO-II-type configurations.

Additional Information

© 2000 The American Physical Society Received 16 February 2000; published 20 November 2000 For helpful advice we thank Michael Gorodetsky, Eric Gustafson, James Hough, David Shoemaker, Jean-Yves Vinet, Rainer Weiss, and especially Vladimir Braginsky and Sergey Vyatchanin. A lively interchange of email with Vyatchanin has helped us understand more deeply the issues underlying thermoelastic noise, and we expect that his manuscript [9] will shed valuable new light on those issues. This research was supported in part by National Science Foundation Grant PHY-9900776.

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