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Conference Paper

Asteroseismology of neutron stars and black holes


Schutz,  Bernard F.
Astrophysical Relativity, AEI-Golm, MPI for Gravitational Physics, Max Planck Society;

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Schutz, B. F. (2008). Asteroseismology of neutron stars and black holes. Journal of Physics: Conference Series, 118(1): 012005.

Cite as: http://hdl.handle.net/11858/00-001M-0000-0013-46E9-6
One of the goals of the large gravitational wave detectors is eventually to observe radiation from oscillations of neutron stars and black holes. These objects have characteristic frequencies of what are called "quasi-normal" mode oscillations, and these frequencies reveal important information about the source. The frequency spectrum of black holes is very different from that of any stars, so if one or more modes are observed then one can conclusively identify the source as a black hole. For neutron stars the spectrum is similar to that of main-sequence stars, but observing a single mode is enough to put strong constraints on the nuclear-matter equation of state, something which is still highly uncertain. Current detectors could make these observations only if the source were exceptionally close. But planned upgrades could make the first relativistic asteroseismological observations; in particular the GEO600 detector will be optimised for these observations by 2010.