[1004.4833] Repeating Tidal Disruption of Stars as a Prompt Electromagnetic Signature of Supermassive Black Hole Coalescence

Authors: Nicholas Stone, Abraham Loeb (Harvard)

Date: 27 Apr 2010

Abstract: A precise electromagnetic measurement of the sky coordinates and redshift of a coalescing black hole binary holds the key for using its gravitational wave (GW) signal to constrain cosmological parameters and to test general relativity. Here we show that the merger of ~10ˆ{6-8}M_sun black holes is generically followed over a period of years by multiple electromagnetic flares from tidally disrupted stars. The sudden recoil imparted to the merged black hole by GW emission results promptly in a tidal disruption rate of stars as high as ~0.1-1 per year. The sequential disruption of stars within a single galaxy over a short period provides a unique electromagnetic flag of a recent black hole coalescence event, and can be used on its own to calibrate the expected rate of GW sources for pulsar timing arrays or the proposed Laser Interferometer Space Antenna (LISA).

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Apr 29, 2010

1004.4833 (/preprints)
2010-04-29, 10:01 [edit]

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© M. Vallisneri 2012 — last modified on 2010/01/29

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