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Journal Article

Limits on anisotropy in the nanohertz stochastic gravitational-wave background

MPS-Authors
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Sesana,  A.
Astrophysical Relativity, AEI-Golm, MPI for Gravitational Physics, Max Planck Society;

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Babak,  S.
Astrophysical Relativity, AEI-Golm, MPI for Gravitational Physics, Max Planck Society;

Brem,  P.
Astrophysical Relativity, AEI-Golm, MPI for Gravitational Physics, Max Planck Society;

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Rosado,  P. A.
Observational Relativity and Cosmology, AEI-Hannover, MPI for Gravitational Physics, Max Planck Society;

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Fulltext (public)

1506.08817.pdf
(Preprint), 681KB

PhysRevLett.115_041101.pdf
(Any fulltext), 443KB

Supplementary Material (public)
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Citation

Taylor, S. R., Mingarelli, C. M. F., Gair, J. R., Sesana, A., Theureau, G., Babak, S., et al. (2015). Limits on anisotropy in the nanohertz stochastic gravitational-wave background. Physical Review Letters, 115: 041101. doi:10.1103/PhysRevLett.115.041101.


Cite as: http://hdl.handle.net/11858/00-001M-0000-0027-C3BA-C
Abstract
The paucity of observed supermassive black hole binaries (SMBHBs) may imply that the gravitational wave background (GWB) from this population is anisotropic, rendering existing analyses sub-optimal. We present the first constraints on the angular distribution of a nanohertz stochastic GWB from circular, inspiral-driven SMBHBs using the $2015$ European Pulsar Timing Array data [Desvignes et al. (in prep.)]. Our analysis of the GWB in the $\sim 2 - 90$ nHz band shows consistency with isotropy, with the strain amplitude in $l>0$ spherical harmonic multipoles $\lesssim 40\%$ of the monopole value. We expect that these more general techniques will become standard tools to probe the angular distribution of source populations.