3 years ago

Prompt Electromagnetic Transients from Binary Black Hole Mergers.

Jeremy Schnittman, John G. Baker, Bruno Giacomazzo, Zachariah B. Etienne, Bernard J. Kelly

Binary black hole (BBH) mergers provide a prime source for current and future interferometric GW observatories. Massive BBH mergers may often take place in plasma-rich environments, leading to the exciting possibility of a concurrent electromagnetic (EM) signal observable by traditional astronomical facilities. However, many critical questions about the generation of such counterparts remain unanswered. We explore mechanisms that may drive EM counterparts with magnetohydrodynamic simulations treating a range of scenarios involving equal-mass black-hole binaries immersed in an initially homogeneous fluid with uniform, orbitally aligned magnetic fields. We find that the time development of Poynting luminosity, which may drive jet-like emissions, is relatively insensitive to aspects of the initial configuration. In particular, over a significant range of initial values, the central magnetic field strength is effectively regulated by the gas flow to yield a Poynting luminosity of $10^{45}-10^{46} \rho_{-13} M_8^2 \, {\rm erg}\,{\rm s}^{-1}$, with BBH mass scaled to $M_8 \equiv M/(10^8 M_{\odot})$ and ambient density $\rho_{-13} \equiv \rho/(10^{-13} \, {\rm g} \, {\rm cm}^{-3})$. We also calculate the direct plasma synchrotron emissions processed through geodesic ray-tracing. Despite lensing effects and dynamics, we find the observed synchrotron flux varies little leading up to merger.

Publisher URL: http://arxiv.org/abs/1710.02132

DOI: arXiv:1710.02132v2

You might also like
Discover & Discuss Important Research

Keeping up-to-date with research can feel impossible, with papers being published faster than you'll ever be able to read them. That's where Researcher comes in: we're simplifying discovery and making important discussions happen. With over 19,000 sources, including peer-reviewed journals, preprints, blogs, universities, podcasts and Live events across 10 research areas, you'll never miss what's important to you. It's like social media, but better. Oh, and we should mention - it's free.

  • Download from Google Play
  • Download from App Store
  • Download from AppInChina

Researcher displays publicly available abstracts and doesn’t host any full article content. If the content is open access, we will direct clicks from the abstracts to the publisher website and display the PDF copy on our platform. Clicks to view the full text will be directed to the publisher website, where only users with subscriptions or access through their institution are able to view the full article.