The circularization timescales of late–type binary stars

Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society Oxford University Press (OUP) (2021)

Authors:

Caroline Terquem, Scott Martin

Abstract:

We examine the consequences of, and apply, the formalism developed in Terquem (2021) for calculating the rate DR at which energy is exchanged between fast tides and convection. In this previous work, DR (which is proportional to the gradient of the convective velocity) was assumed to be positive in order to dissipate the tidal energy. Here we argue that, even if energy is intermittently transferred from convection to the tides, it must ultimately return to the convective flow and transported efficiently to the stellar surface on the convective timescale. This is consistent with, but much less restrictive than, enforcing DR > 0. Our principle result is a calculation of the circularization timescale of late-type binaries, taking into account the full time evolution of the stellar structure. We find that circularization is very efficient during the PMS phase, inefficient during the MS, and once again efficient when the star approaches the RGB. These results are in much better agreement with observations than earlier theories. We also apply our formalism to hot Jupiters, and find that tidal dissipation in a Jupiter mass planet yields a circularization timescale of 1 Gyr for an orbital period of 3 d, also in good overall agreement with observations. The approach here is novel, and the apparent success of the theory in resolving longstanding timescale puzzles is compelling.

High eccentricities and high masses characterize gravitational-wave captures in galactic nuclei as seen by Earth-based detectors

Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society 506:2 (2021) 1665-1696

Authors:

L Gondán, B Kocsis

Abstract:

The emission of gravitational waves (GWs) during single-single close encounters in galactic nuclei (GNs) leads to the formation and rapid merger of highly eccentric stellar-mass black hole (BH) binaries. The distinct distribution of physical parameters makes it possible to statistically distinguish this source population from others. Previous studies determined the expected binary parameter distribution for this source population in single GNs. Here, we take into account the effects of dynamical friction, post-Newtonian corrections, and observational bias to determine the detected sources' parameter distributions from all GNs in the Universe. We find that the total binary mass distribution of detected mergers is strongly tilted towards higher masses. The distribution of initial peak GW frequency is remarkably high between 1 and 70 Hz, ~50 per cent of GW capture sources form above 10 Hz with e ≥ 0.95. The eccentricity when first entering the LIGO/Virgo/KAGRA band satisfies e10 Hz > 0.1 for over 92 per cent of sources and e10 Hz > 0.8 for more than half of the sources. At the point when the pericentre reaches 10GM/c2 the eccentricity satisfies e10M > 0.1 for over ~70 per cent of the sources, making single-single GWcapture events in GNs the most eccentric source population among the currently known stellar-mass binary BH merger channels in our Universe. We identify correlations between total mass, mass ratio, source detection distance, and eccentricities e10 Hz and e10M. The recently measured source parameters of GW190521 lie close to the peak of the theoretical distributions and the estimated escape speed of the host environment is ~7.5 × 103-1.2 × 104 km s-1, making this source a candidate for this astrophysical merger channel.

Signatures of hierarchical mergers in black hole spin and mass distribution

Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society Oxford University Press (OUP) (2021)

Authors:

Hiromichi Tagawa, Zoltán Haiman, Imre Bartos, Bence Kocsis, Kazuyuki Omukai

Abstract:

Abstract Recent gravitational wave (GW) observations by LIGO/Virgo show evidence for hierarchical mergers, where the merging BHs are the remnants of previous BH merger events. These events may carry important clues about the astrophysical host environments of the GW sources. In this paper, we present the distributions of the effective spin parameter (χeff), the precession spin parameter (χp), and the chirp mass (mchirp) expected in hierarchical mergers. Under a wide range of assumptions, hierarchical mergers produce (i) a monotonic increase of the average of the typical total spin for merging binaries, which we characterize with ${\bar{\chi }}_\mathrm{typ}\equiv \overline{(\chi _\mathrm{eff}^2+\chi _\mathrm{p}^2)^{1/2}}$, up to roughly the maximum mchirp among first-generation (1g) BHs, and (ii) a plateau at ${\bar{\chi }}_\mathrm{typ}\sim 0.6$ at higher mchirp. We suggest that the maximum mass and typical spin magnitudes for 1g BHs can be estimated from ${\bar{\chi }}_\mathrm{typ}$ as a function of mchirp. The GW data observed in LIGO/Virgo O1–O3a prefers an increase in ${\bar{\chi }}_\mathrm{typ}$ at low mchirp, which is consistent with the growth of the BH spin magnitude by hierarchical mergers, at ∼2σ confidence. A Bayesian analysis using the χeff, χp, and mchirp distributions suggests that 1g BHs have the maximum mass of ∼15–30 M⊙ if the majority of mergers are of high-generation BHs (not among 1g-1g BHs), which is consistent with mergers in active galactic nucleus disks and/or nuclear star clusters, while if mergers mainly originate from globular clusters, 1g BHs are favored to have non-zero spin magnitudes of ∼0.3. We also forecast that signatures for hierarchical mergers in the ${\bar{\chi }}_\mathrm{typ}$ distribution can be confidently recovered once the number of GW events increases to ≳ O(100).

Turbulent transport of impurities in 3D devices

Nuclear Fusion IOP Publishing (2021)

Authors:

José Manuel García Regaña, Michael Barnes, Ivan Calvo, Antonio González, Hanne Thienpondt, Edilberto Sanchez, Felix I Parra, Denis A St-Onge

Thermal equilibrium of an ideal gas in a free-floating box

AMERICAN JOURNAL OF PHYSICS 89:8 (2021) 789-792

Authors:

Scott Tremaine, Bence Kocsis, Abraham Loeb