Detectability of Gravitational Waves from High-Redshift Binaries

P.A. Rosado, P.D. Lasky, E. Thrane, Xingjiang Zhu, I. Mandel, A. Sesana

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    Abstract

    © 2016 American Physical Society. Recent nondetection of gravitational-wave backgrounds from pulsar timing arrays casts further uncertainty on the evolution of supermassive black hole binaries. We study the capabilities of current gravitational-wave observatories to detect individual binaries and demonstrate that, contrary to conventional wisdom, some are, in principle, detectable throughout the Universe. In particular, a binary with rest-frame mass 1010Ma can be detected by current timing arrays at arbitrarily high redshifts. The same claim will apply for less massive binaries with more sensitive future arrays. As a consequence, future searches for nanohertz gravitational waves could be expanded to target evolving high-redshift binaries. We calculate the maximum distance at which binaries can be observed with pulsar timing arrays and other detectors, properly accounting for redshift and using realistic binary waveforms.
    Original languageEnglish
    Article number101102
    Pages (from-to)101102-1-101102-5
    JournalPhysical Review Letters
    Volume116
    Issue number10
    DOIs
    Publication statusPublished - 10 Mar 2016

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