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Journal Article

Coincident detection significance in multimessenger astronomy

MPS-Authors
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Dent,  Thomas
Observational Relativity and Cosmology, AEI-Hannover, MPI for Gravitational Physics, Max Planck Society;

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Eggenstein,  Heinz-Bernd
Observational Relativity and Cosmology, AEI-Hannover, MPI for Gravitational Physics, Max Planck Society;
Astrophysical and Cosmological Relativity, AEI-Golm, MPI for Gravitational Physics, Max Planck Society;

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Nielsen,  Alex B.
Astrophysical Relativity, AEI-Golm, MPI for Gravitational Physics, Max Planck Society;

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Prix,  Reinhard
Observational Relativity and Cosmology, AEI-Hannover, MPI for Gravitational Physics, Max Planck Society;
Astrophysical and Cosmological Relativity, AEI-Golm, MPI for Gravitational Physics, Max Planck Society;

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Was,  Michal
Laser Interferometry & Gravitational Wave Astronomy, AEI-Hannover, MPI for Gravitational Physics, Max Planck Society, Hannover, DE;

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Zhu,  Sylvia
Astrophysical and Cosmological Relativity, AEI-Golm, MPI for Gravitational Physics, Max Planck Society;
Searching for Continuous Gravitational Waves, AEI-Hannover, MPI for Gravitational Physics, Max Planck Society;

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Fulltext (public)

1712.05392.pdf
(Preprint), 2MB

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Citation

Ashton, G., Burns, E., Dal Canton, T., Dent, T., Eggenstein, H.-B., Nielsen, A. B., et al. (2018). Coincident detection significance in multimessenger astronomy. The Astrophysical Journal, 860(1): 6. doi:10.3847/1538-4357/aabfd2.


Cite as: http://hdl.handle.net/21.11116/0000-0000-3D2F-9
Abstract
We derive a Bayesian criterion for assessing whether signals observed in two separate data sets originate from a common source. The Bayes factor for a common vs. unrelated origin of signals includes an overlap integral of the posterior distributions over the common source parameters. Focusing on multimessenger gravitational-wave astronomy, we apply the method to the spatial and temporal association of independent gravitational-wave and electromagnetic (or neutrino) observations. As an example, we consider the coincidence between the recently discovered gravitational-wave signal GW170817 from a binary neutron star merger and the gamma-ray burst GRB 170817A: we find that the common source model is enormously favored over a model describing them as unrelated signals.