Complete waveform model for compact binaries on eccentric orbits

E. A. Huerta, Prayush Kumar, Bhanu Agarwal, Daniel George, Hsi Yu Schive, Harald P. Pfeiffer, Roland Haas, Wei Ren, Tony Chu, Michael Boyle, Daniel A. Hemberger, Lawrence E. Kidder, Mark A. Scheel, Bela Szilagyi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


We present a time domain waveform model that describes the inspiral, merger and ringdown of compact binary systems whose components are nonspinning, and which evolve on orbits with low to moderate eccentricity. The inspiral evolution is described using third-order post-Newtonian equations both for the equations of motion of the binary, and its far-zone radiation field. This latter component also includes instantaneous, tails and tails-of-tails contributions, and a contribution due to nonlinear memory. This framework reduces to the post-Newtonian approximant TaylorT4 at third post-Newtonian order in the zero-eccentricity limit. To improve phase accuracy, we also incorporate higher-order post-Newtonian corrections for the energy flux of quasicircular binaries and gravitational self-force corrections to the binding energy of compact binaries. This enhanced prescription for the inspiral evolution is combined with a fully analytical prescription for the merger-ringdown evolution constructed using a catalog of numerical relativity simulations. We show that this inspiral-mergerringdown waveform model reproduces the effective-one-body model of Ref. [Y. Pan et al., Phys. Rev. D 89, 061501 (2014).] for quasicircular black hole binaries with mass ratios between 1 to 15 in the zero-eccentricity limit over a wide range of the parameter space under consideration. Using a set of eccentric numerical relativity simulations, not used during calibration, we show that our new eccentric model reproduces the true features of eccentric compact binary coalescence throughout merger. We use this model to show that the gravitational-wave transients GW150914 and GW151226 can be effectively recovered with template banks of quasicircular, spin-aligned waveforms if the eccentricity e0 of these systems when they enter the aLIGO band at a gravitational-wave frequency of 14 Hz satisfies eGW150914 0 = 0.15 and eGW151226 0 = 0.1. We also find that varying the spin combinations of the quasicircular, spin-aligned template waveforms does not improve the recovery of nonspinning, eccentric signals when e0 = 0.1. This suggests that these two signal manifolds are predominantly orthogonal.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number024038
JournalPhysical Review D
Issue number2
StatePublished - Jan 2017

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physics and Astronomy (miscellaneous)


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