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  Model systematics in time domain tests of binary black hole evolution

Kastha, S., Capano, C., Westerweck, J., Cabero, M., Krishnan, B., & Nielsen, A. B. (2022). Model systematics in time domain tests of binary black hole evolution. Physical Review D, 105(6): 064042. doi:10.1103/PhysRevD.105.064042.

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 Creators:
Kastha, Shilpa1, Author              
Capano, Collin1, Author              
Westerweck, Julian1, Author              
Cabero, Miriam1, Author              
Krishnan, Badri1, Author              
Nielsen, Alex B.1, Author              
Affiliations:
1Observational Relativity and Cosmology, AEI-Hannover, MPI for Gravitational Physics, Max Planck Society, ou_24011              

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Free keywords: General Relativity and Quantum Cosmology, gr-qc, Astrophysics, High Energy Astrophysical Phenomena, astro-ph.HE
 Abstract: We perform several consistency tests between different phases of binary black hole dynamics; the inspiral, the merger, and the ringdown on the gravitational wave events GW150914 and GW170814. These tests are performed explicitly in the time domain, without any spectral leakage between the different phases. We compute posterior distributions on the mass and spin of the initial black holes and the final black hole. We also compute the initial areas of the two individual black holes and the final area from the parameters describing the remnant black hole. This facilitates a test of Hawking's black hole area theorem. We use different waveform models to quantify systematic waveform uncertainties for the area increase law with the two events. We find that these errors may lead to overstating the confidence with which the area theorem is confirmed. For example, we find $>99\%$ agreement with the area theorem for GW150914 if a damped sinusoid consisting of a single-mode is used at merger to estimate the final area. This is because this model overestimates the final mass. Including an overtone of the dominant mode decreases the confidence to $\sim94\%$; using a full merger-ringdown model further decreases the confidence to $\sim 85-90\%$. We find that comparing the measured change in the area to the expected change in area yields a more robust test, as it also captures over estimates in the change of area. We find good agreement with GR when applying this test to GW150914 and GW170814.

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 Dates: 2021-11-262022
 Publication Status: Published in print
 Pages: 11 pages, 8 figures
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 Rev. Type: -
 Identifiers: arXiv: 2111.13664
DOI: 10.1103/PhysRevD.105.064042
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Title: Physical Review D
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Pages: - Volume / Issue: 105 (6) Sequence Number: 064042 Start / End Page: - Identifier: -