What we can learn from multi-band observations of black hole binaries

Kavli Affiliate: David H. Shoemaker

| First 5 Authors: Curt Cutler, Emanuele Berti, Karan Jani, Ely D. Kovetz, Lisa Randall

| Summary:

The LIGO/Virgo gravitational-wave (GW) interferometers have to-date detected
ten merging black hole (BH) binaries, some with masses considerably larger than
had been anticipated. Stellar-mass BH binaries at the high end of the observed
mass range (with "chirp mass" ${cal M} gtrsim 25 M_{odot}$) should be
detectable by a space-based GW observatory years before those binaries become
visible to ground-based GW detectors. This white paper discusses some of the
synergies that result when the same binaries are observed by instruments in
space and on the ground. We consider intermediate-mass black hole binaries
(with total mass $M sim 10^2 -10^4 M_{odot}$) as well as stellar-mass black
hole binaries. We illustrate how combining space-based and ground-based data
sets can break degeneracies and thereby improve our understanding of the
binary’s physical parameters. While early work focused on how space-based
observatories can forecast precisely when some mergers will be observed on the
ground, the reverse is also important: ground-based detections will allow us to
"dig deeper" into archived, space-based data to confidently identify black hole
inspirals whose signal-to-noise ratios were originally sub-threshold,
increasing the number of binaries observed in both bands by a factor of $sim 4
– 7$.

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