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#### Theory-agnostic framework for dynamical scalarization of compact binaries

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1906.08161.pdf

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##### Citation

Khalil, M., Sennett, N., Steinhoff, J., & Buonanno, A. (2019). Theory-agnostic
framework for dynamical scalarization of compact binaries.* Physical Review D,* *100*(12):
124013. doi:10.1103/PhysRevD.100.124013.

Cite as: https://hdl.handle.net/21.11116/0000-0003-DF6E-8

##### Abstract

Gravitational wave observations can provide unprecedented insight into the

fundamental nature of gravity and allow for novel tests of modifications to

General Relativity. One proposed modification suggests that gravity may undergo

a phase transition in the strong-field regime; the detection of such a new

phase would comprise a smoking-gun for corrections to General Relativity at the

classical level. Several classes of modified gravity predict the existence of

such a transition - known as spontaneous scalarization - associated with the

spontaneous symmetry breaking of a scalar field near a compact object. Using a

strong-field-agnostic effective-field-theory approach, we show that all

theories that exhibit spontaneous scalarization can also manifest dynamical

scalarization, a phase transition associated with symmetry breaking in a binary

system. We derive an effective point-particle action that provides a simple

parametrization describing both phenomena, which establishes a foundation for

theory-agnostic searches for scalarization in gravitational-wave observations.

This parametrization can be mapped onto any theory in which scalarization

occurs; we demonstrate this point explicitly for binary black holes with a toy

model of modified electrodynamics.

fundamental nature of gravity and allow for novel tests of modifications to

General Relativity. One proposed modification suggests that gravity may undergo

a phase transition in the strong-field regime; the detection of such a new

phase would comprise a smoking-gun for corrections to General Relativity at the

classical level. Several classes of modified gravity predict the existence of

such a transition - known as spontaneous scalarization - associated with the

spontaneous symmetry breaking of a scalar field near a compact object. Using a

strong-field-agnostic effective-field-theory approach, we show that all

theories that exhibit spontaneous scalarization can also manifest dynamical

scalarization, a phase transition associated with symmetry breaking in a binary

system. We derive an effective point-particle action that provides a simple

parametrization describing both phenomena, which establishes a foundation for

theory-agnostic searches for scalarization in gravitational-wave observations.

This parametrization can be mapped onto any theory in which scalarization

occurs; we demonstrate this point explicitly for binary black holes with a toy

model of modified electrodynamics.