Change search
ReferencesLink to record
Permanent link

Direct link
The electromagnetic signals of compact binary mergers
Stockholm University, Faculty of Science, Department of Astronomy.
2013 (English)In: Monthly notices of the Royal Astronomical Society, ISSN 0035-8711, E-ISSN 1365-2966, Vol. 430, no 3, 2121-2136 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Compact binary mergers are prime sources of gravitational waves (GWs), targeted by current and next generation detectors. The question 'what is the observable electromagnetic (EM) signature of a compact binary merger?' is an intriguing one with crucial consequences to the quest for GWs. We present a large set of numerical simulations that focus on the EM signals that emerge from the dynamically ejected subrelativistic material. These outflows produce on a time-scale of a day macronovae - short-lived infrared (IR) to ultraviolet (UV) signals powered by radioactive decay. Like in regular supernovae the interaction of this outflow with the surrounding matter inevitably leads to a long-lasting remnant. We calculate the expected radio signals of these remnants on time-scales longer than a year, when the subrelativistic ejecta dominate the emission. We discuss their detectability in 1.4 GHz and 150 MHz and compare it with an updated estimate of the detectability of short gamma-ray bursts' orphan afterglows (which are produced by a different component of this outflow). We find that mergers with characteristics similar to those of the Galactic neutron star binary population (similar masses and typical circummerger Galactic disc density of similar to 1 cm(-3)) that take place at the detection horizon of advanced GW detectors (300 Mpc) yield 1.4 GHz [150 MHz] signals of similar to 50 [300] mu Jy, for several years. The signal on time-scales of weeks is dominated by the mildly and/or ultrarelativistic outflow, which is not accounted for by our simulations, and is expected to be even brighter. Upcoming all sky surveys are expected to detect a few dozen, and possibly more, merger remnants at any given time thereby providing robust lower limits to the mergers rate even before the advanced GW detectors become operational. The macronovae signals from the same distance peak in the IR to UV range at an observed magnitude that may be as bright as 22-23 about 10 h after the merger but dimmer, redder and longer if the opacity is larger.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2013. Vol. 430, no 3, 2121-2136 p.
Keyword [en]
gravitational waves, stars: neutron, radio continuum: general, surveys, gamma-ray burst: general
National Category
Astronomy, Astrophysics and Cosmology
URN: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-91538DOI: 10.1093/mnras/stt037ISI: 000319260500049OAI: diva2:634490
EU, European Research Council


Available from: 2013-07-01 Created: 2013-06-28 Last updated: 2013-07-01Bibliographically approved

Open Access in DiVA

No full text

Other links

Publisher's full text

Search in DiVA

By author/editor
Rosswog, Stephan
By organisation
Department of Astronomy
In the same journal
Monthly notices of the Royal Astronomical Society
Astronomy, Astrophysics and Cosmology

Search outside of DiVA

GoogleGoogle Scholar
The number of downloads is the sum of all downloads of full texts. It may include eg previous versions that are now no longer available

Altmetric score

Total: 29 hits
ReferencesLink to record
Permanent link

Direct link