TY - JOUR

T1 - Constraining parity violation in gravity with measurements of neutron-star moments of inertia

AU - Yunes, Nicolás

AU - Psaltis, Dimitrios

AU - Özel, Feryal

AU - Loeb, Abraham

PY - 2010/3/15

Y1 - 2010/3/15

N2 - Neutron stars are sensitive laboratories for testing general relativity, especially when considering deviations where velocities are relativistic and gravitational fields are strong. One such deviation is described by dynamical, Chern-Simons modified gravity, where the Einstein-Hilbert action is modified through the addition of the gravitational parity-violating Pontryagin density coupled to a field. This four-dimensional effective theory arises naturally both in perturbative and nonperturbative string theory, loop quantum gravity, and generic effective field theory expansions. We calculate here Chern-Simons modifications to the properties and gravitational fields of slowly spinning neutron stars. We find that the Chern-Simons correction affects only the gravitomagnetic sector of the metric to leading order, thus introducing modifications to the moment-of-inertia but not to the mass-radius relation. We show that an observational determination of the moment-of-inertia to an accuracy of 10%, as is expected from near-future observations of the double pulsar, will place a constraint on the Chern-Simons coupling constant of ξ1/45km, which is at least three-orders of magnitude stronger than the previous strongest bound.

AB - Neutron stars are sensitive laboratories for testing general relativity, especially when considering deviations where velocities are relativistic and gravitational fields are strong. One such deviation is described by dynamical, Chern-Simons modified gravity, where the Einstein-Hilbert action is modified through the addition of the gravitational parity-violating Pontryagin density coupled to a field. This four-dimensional effective theory arises naturally both in perturbative and nonperturbative string theory, loop quantum gravity, and generic effective field theory expansions. We calculate here Chern-Simons modifications to the properties and gravitational fields of slowly spinning neutron stars. We find that the Chern-Simons correction affects only the gravitomagnetic sector of the metric to leading order, thus introducing modifications to the moment-of-inertia but not to the mass-radius relation. We show that an observational determination of the moment-of-inertia to an accuracy of 10%, as is expected from near-future observations of the double pulsar, will place a constraint on the Chern-Simons coupling constant of ξ1/45km, which is at least three-orders of magnitude stronger than the previous strongest bound.

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U2 - 10.1103/PhysRevD.81.064020

DO - 10.1103/PhysRevD.81.064020

M3 - Article

AN - SCOPUS:77951586471

VL - 81

JO - Physical Review D - Particles, Fields, Gravitation and Cosmology

JF - Physical Review D - Particles, Fields, Gravitation and Cosmology

SN - 1550-7998

IS - 6

M1 - 064020

ER -