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The basic physics of the binary black hole merger GW150914

Citation

Abbott, BP and Abbott, R and Siellez, K and Zweizig, J, LIGO Scientific and VIRGO Collaborations, The basic physics of the binary black hole merger GW150914, Annalen Der Physik, 529, (1-2) Article 1600209. ISSN 0003-3804 (2017) [Refereed Article]


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Copyright Statement

2016 The Authors This is an open access article under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution (CC BY 4.0) License, (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/) which permits use, distribution and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

DOI: doi:10.1002/andp.201600209

Abstract

The first direct gravitational-wave detection was made by the Advanced Laser Interferometer Gravitational Wave Observatory on September 14, 2015. The GW150914 signal was strong enough to be apparent, without using any waveform model, in the filtered detector strain data. Here, features of the signal visible in the data are analyzed using concepts from Newtonian physics and general relativity, accessible to anyone with a general physics background. The simple analysis presented here is consistent with the fully general-relativistic analyses published elsewhere, in showing that the signal was produced by the inspiral and subsequent merger of two black holes. The black holes were each of approximately 35M⊙, still orbited each other as close as ∼350 km apart and subsequently merged to form a single black hole. Similar reasoning, directly from the data, is used to roughly estimate how far these black holes were from the Earth, and the energy that they radiated in gravitational waves.

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Article
Keywords:binary black hole, advanced LIGO, gravitational waves, gravitational wave detection
Research Division:Physical Sciences
Research Group:Astronomical sciences
Research Field:General relativity and gravitational waves
Objective Division:Expanding Knowledge
Objective Group:Expanding knowledge
Objective Field:Expanding knowledge in the physical sciences
UTAS Author:Siellez, K (Dr Karelle Siellez)
ID Code:151987
Year Published:2017
Web of Science® Times Cited:57
Deposited By:Physics
Deposited On:2022-08-09
Last Modified:2022-09-15
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