Dynamical Descalarization in Binary Black Hole Mergers

Hector O. Silva, Helvi Witek, Matthew Elley, Nicolás Yunes

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Scalar fields coupled to the Gauss-Bonnet invariant can undergo a tachyonic instability, leading to spontaneous scalarization of black holes. Studies of this effect have so far been restricted to single black hole spacetimes. We present the first results on dynamical scalarization in head-on collisions and quasicircular inspirals of black hole binaries with numerical relativity simulations. We show that black hole binaries can either form a scalarized remnant or dynamically descalarize by shedding off its initial scalar hair. The observational implications of these findings are discussed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number031101
JournalPhysical review letters
Issue number3
StatePublished - Jul 16 2021

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Physics and Astronomy


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