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FTheory: Testing the Nature of the Compact Objects Discovered by LIGO

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Cecilia Chirenti, Universidade Federal do ABC
When
01 September 2017 from 11:15 AM to 12:15 PM
Where
320 Whitmore Lab
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Gravitational wave detections will allow us to make fundamental tests of general relativity, and of the astrophysical objects that act as their sources. The very first detections already indicate that stellar mass black holes can be more massive than our previous standard expectations. But how confident can we be that these objects are really black holes? The gravitational wave signal can be divided into three parts: 1- inspiral, 2- merger and 3- ringdown. During most of the inspiral the binary components are far enough away from each other that they can be treated in the post-Newtonian approximation as point particles, whereas numerical relativity simulations must be performed to generate the signal expected during the merger. I will discuss how the ringdown portion of the signal may be used to discriminate between black holes and other possible sources. I will focus on (rotating) gravastar models, whch have been proposed as one of the best alternatives to black holes, and have remained viable candidates despite multiple attempts to rule them out. 

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