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Published April 21, 2017 | Submitted + Published + Supplemental Material
Journal Article Open

Black Hole Spectroscopy with Coherent Mode Stacking


The measurement of multiple ringdown modes in gravitational waves from binary black hole mergers will allow for testing the fundamental properties of black holes in general relativity and to constrain modified theories of gravity. To enhance the ability of Advanced LIGO/Virgo to perform such tasks, we propose a coherent mode stacking method to search for a chosen target mode within a collection of multiple merger events. We first rescale each signal so that the target mode in each of them has the same frequency and then sum the waveforms constructively. A crucial element to realize this coherent superposition is to make use of a priori information extracted from the inspiral-merger phase of each event. To illustrate the method, we perform a study with simulated events targeting the ℓ=m=3 ringdown mode of the remnant black holes. We show that this method can significantly boost the signal-to-noise ratio of the collective target mode compared to that of the single loudest event. Using current estimates of merger rates, we show that it is likely that advanced-era detectors can measure this collective ringdown mode with one year of coincident data gathered at design sensitivity.

Additional Information

© 2017 American Physical Society. Received 20 January 2017; published 20 April 2017. H. Y. thanks Haixing Miao for sharing the code for downhill simplex optimization. The authors thank Emanueli Berti, Swetha Bhagwat, Vitor Cardoso, Neil Cornish, Kendrick Smith, Chris Van Den Broeck, and John Veitch for valuable discussions and comments. K. Y. acknowledges support from JSPS Postdoctoral Fellowships for Research Abroad. F. P. and V. P. acknowledge support from NSF Grant No. PHY-1607449 and the Simons Foundation. V. P. also acknowledges support from NASA Grant No. NNX16AR67G (Fermi). N. Y. acknowledges support from NSF CAREER Grant No. PHY-1250636. Computational resources were provided by XSEDE/TACC under Grant No. TG-PHY100053. This research was supported in part by NSERC and in part by the Perimeter Institute for Theoretical Physics. Research at Perimeter Institute is supported by the Government of Canada through the Department of Innovation, Science and Economic Development Canada and by the Province of Ontario through the Ministry of Research and Innovation.

Attached Files

Published - PhysRevLett.118.161101.pdf

Submitted - 1701.05808.pdf

Supplemental Material - SuppleM.pdf


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