The Samurai Project: verifying the consistency of black-hole-binary waveforms for gravitational-wave detection

Review, Article, Preprint English OPEN
Hannam, Mark ; Husa, Sascha ; Baker, John G. ; Boyle, Michael ; Bruegmann, Bernd ; Chu, Tony ; Dorband, Nils ; Herrmann, Frank ; Hinder, Ian ; Kelly, Bernard J. ; Kidder, Lawrence E. ; Laguna, Pablo ; Matthews, Keith D. ; van Meter, James R. ; Pfeiffer, Harald P. ; Pollney, Denis ; Reisswig, Christian ; Scheel, Mark A. ; Shoemaker, Deirdre (2009)
  • Publisher: American Physical Society
  • Related identifiers: doi: 10.1103/PhysRevD.79.084025
  • Subject: Boundary value-problem | Radiation | Einstein equations | Spin | Modeling kicks | General-relativity | Compact binaries | Evolution | Numerical relativity | Initial data
    arxiv: General Relativity and Quantum Cosmology

We quantify the consistency of numerical-relativity black-hole-binary waveforms for use in gravitational-wave (GW) searches with current and planned ground-based detectors. We compare previously published results for the (center dot=2,vertical bar m vertical bar=2) mode of the gravitational waves from an equal-mass nonspinning binary, calculated by five numerical codes. We focus on the 1000M (about six orbits, or 12 GW cycles) before the peak of the GW amplitude and the subsequent ringdown. We find that the phase and amplitude agree within each code's uncertainty estimates. The mismatch between the (center dot=2,vertical bar m vertical bar=2) modes is better than 10(-3) for binary masses above 60M with respect to the Enhanced LIGO detector noise curve, and for masses above 180M with respect to Advanced LIGO, Virgo, and Advanced Virgo. Between the waveforms with the best agreement, the mismatch is below 2x10(-4). We find that the waveforms would be indistinguishable in all ground-based detectors (and for the masses we consider) if detected with a signal-to-noise ratio of less than approximate to 14, or less than approximate to 25 in the best cases.