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Title: The Location and Environments of Neutron Star Mergers in an Evolving Universe

Abstract

The simultaneous detection of gravitational and electromagnetic waves from a binary neutron star merger has both solidified the link between neutron star mergers and short-duration gamma-ray bursts (GRBs), and demonstrated the ability of astronomers to follow-up the gravitational wave detection to place constraints on the ejecta from these mergers, as well as the nature of the GRB engine and its surroundings. As the sensitivity of aLIGO and VIRGO increases, it is likely that a growing number of such detections will occur in the next few years, leading to a sufficiently large number of events to constrain the populations of these GRB events. While long-duration GRBs originate from massive stars and thus are located near their stellar nurseries, binary neutron stars may merge on much longer timescales, and thus may have had time to migrate appreciably. The strength and character of the electromagnetic afterglow emission of binary neutron star mergers is a sensitive function of the circum-merger environment. Though the explosion sites of short GRBs have been explored in the literature, the question has yet to be fully addressed in its cosmological context. We present cosmological simulations following the evolution of a galaxy cluster, including star formation combined with binary populationmore » synthesis models, to self-consistently track the locations and environmental gas densities of compact binary merger sites throughout the cosmic web. In conclusion, we present probability distributions for densities as a function of redshift and discuss model sensitivity to population synthesis model assumptions.« less

Authors:
ORCiD logo [1]; ORCiD logo [2]; ORCiD logo [2]; ORCiD logo [3]; ORCiD logo [2];  [4]
  1. Los Alamos National Lab. (LANL), Los Alamos, NM (United States); Southern Utah Univ., Cedar City, UT (United States). Dept. of Physical Science
  2. Los Alamos National Lab. (LANL), Los Alamos, NM (United States)
  3. Clemson Univ., SC (United States). Dept. of Physics and Astronomy
  4. Polish Academy of Sciences, Warsaw (Poland). Nicolaus Copernicus Astronomical Center
Publication Date:
Research Org.:
Los Alamos National Lab. (LANL), Los Alamos, NM (United States)
Sponsoring Org.:
USDOE National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA), Office of Defense Nuclear Nonproliferation (NA-20)
OSTI Identifier:
1481979
Report Number(s):
LA-UR-18-20312
Journal ID: ISSN 1538-4357
Grant/Contract Number:  
AC52-06NA25396
Resource Type:
Accepted Manuscript
Journal Name:
The Astrophysical Journal (Online)
Additional Journal Information:
Journal Name: The Astrophysical Journal (Online); Journal Volume: 865; Journal Issue: 1; Journal ID: ISSN 1538-4357
Publisher:
Institute of Physics (IOP)
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
79 ASTRONOMY AND ASTROPHYSICS

Citation Formats

Wiggins, Brandon Kerry, Fryer, Christopher Lee, Smidt, Joseph M., Hartmann, Dieter, Lloyd-Ronning, Nicole, and Belcynski, Chris. The Location and Environments of Neutron Star Mergers in an Evolving Universe. United States: N. p., 2018. Web. doi:10.3847/1538-4357/aad2d4.
Wiggins, Brandon Kerry, Fryer, Christopher Lee, Smidt, Joseph M., Hartmann, Dieter, Lloyd-Ronning, Nicole, & Belcynski, Chris. The Location and Environments of Neutron Star Mergers in an Evolving Universe. United States. doi:10.3847/1538-4357/aad2d4.
Wiggins, Brandon Kerry, Fryer, Christopher Lee, Smidt, Joseph M., Hartmann, Dieter, Lloyd-Ronning, Nicole, and Belcynski, Chris. Tue . "The Location and Environments of Neutron Star Mergers in an Evolving Universe". United States. doi:10.3847/1538-4357/aad2d4. https://www.osti.gov/servlets/purl/1481979.
@article{osti_1481979,
title = {The Location and Environments of Neutron Star Mergers in an Evolving Universe},
author = {Wiggins, Brandon Kerry and Fryer, Christopher Lee and Smidt, Joseph M. and Hartmann, Dieter and Lloyd-Ronning, Nicole and Belcynski, Chris},
abstractNote = {The simultaneous detection of gravitational and electromagnetic waves from a binary neutron star merger has both solidified the link between neutron star mergers and short-duration gamma-ray bursts (GRBs), and demonstrated the ability of astronomers to follow-up the gravitational wave detection to place constraints on the ejecta from these mergers, as well as the nature of the GRB engine and its surroundings. As the sensitivity of aLIGO and VIRGO increases, it is likely that a growing number of such detections will occur in the next few years, leading to a sufficiently large number of events to constrain the populations of these GRB events. While long-duration GRBs originate from massive stars and thus are located near their stellar nurseries, binary neutron stars may merge on much longer timescales, and thus may have had time to migrate appreciably. The strength and character of the electromagnetic afterglow emission of binary neutron star mergers is a sensitive function of the circum-merger environment. Though the explosion sites of short GRBs have been explored in the literature, the question has yet to be fully addressed in its cosmological context. We present cosmological simulations following the evolution of a galaxy cluster, including star formation combined with binary population synthesis models, to self-consistently track the locations and environmental gas densities of compact binary merger sites throughout the cosmic web. In conclusion, we present probability distributions for densities as a function of redshift and discuss model sensitivity to population synthesis model assumptions.},
doi = {10.3847/1538-4357/aad2d4},
journal = {The Astrophysical Journal (Online)},
number = 1,
volume = 865,
place = {United States},
year = {2018},
month = {9}
}

Journal Article:
Free Publicly Available Full Text
Publisher's Version of Record

Figures / Tables:

Figure 1 Figure 1: Projection plots of gas density of our cosmological calculations at various scales. Our initial cosmological calculations spanned a∼ 30 Mpc co-moving volume. A subsequent deep dive calculation of a (4 Mpc/h)3 box with eleven levels of refinement and primordial chemistry on the largest halo was then carried out.more » On refinement deep dives, our resolution is sufficient to resolve galaxy structure in this cluster.« less

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