General relativistic simulations of magnetized binary neutron star mergers

Yuk Tung Liu, Stuart L. Shapiro, Zachariah B. Etienne, Keisuke Taniguchi

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Binary neutron stars (NSNS) are expected to be among the leading sources of gravitational waves observable by ground-based laser interferometers and may be the progenitors of short-hard gamma-ray bursts. We present a series of general relativistic NSNS coalescence simulations both for unmagnetized and magnetized stars. We adopt quasiequilibrium initial data for circular, irrotational binaries constructed in the conformal thin-sandwich (CTS) framework. We adopt the BSSN formulation for evolving the metric and a high-resolution shock-capturing scheme to handle the magnetohydrodynamics. Our simulations of unmagnetized binaries agree with the results of Shibata, Taniguchi and Uryū. In cases in which the mergers result in a prompt collapse to a black hole, we are able to use puncture gauge conditions to extend the evolution and determine the mass of the material that forms a disk. We find that the disk mass is less than 2% of the total mass in all cases studied. We then add a small poloidal magnetic field to the initial configurations and study the subsequent evolution. For cases in which the remnant is a hypermassive neutron star, we see measurable differences in both the amplitude and phase of the gravitational waveforms following the merger. For cases in which the remnant is a black hole surrounded by a disk, the disk mass and the gravitational waveforms are about the same as the unmagnetized cases. Magnetic fields substantially affect the long-term, secular evolution of a hypermassive neutron star (driving "delayed collapse") and an accretion disk around a nascent black hole.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number024012
JournalPhysical Review D - Particles, Fields, Gravitation and Cosmology
Issue number2
StatePublished - Jul 8 2008

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Nuclear and High Energy Physics
  • Physics and Astronomy (miscellaneous)

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