Systematic parameter errors in inspiraling neutron star binaries

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The coalescence of two neutron stars is an important gravitational wave source for LIGO and other detectors. Numerous studies have considered the precision with which binary parameters (masses, spins, Love numbers) can be measured. Here I consider the accuracy with which these parameters can be determined in the presence of systematic errors due to waveform approximations. These approximations include truncation of the post-Newtonian (PN) series and neglect of neutron star (NS) spin, tidal deformation, or orbital eccentricity. All of these effects can yield systematic errors that exceed statistical errors for plausible parameter values. In particular, neglecting spin, eccentricity, or high-order PN terms causes a significant bias in the NS Love number. Tidal effects will not be measurable with PN inspiral waveforms if these systematic errors are not controlled.

Original languageEnglish
Article number101101
JournalPhysical Review Letters
Issue number10
StatePublished - 10 Mar 2014


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