Can magnetic fields be detected during the inspiral of binary neutron stars?
Article first published online: 10 SEP 2009
© 2009 The Authors. Journal compilation © 2009 RAS
Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society: Letters
Volume 399, Issue 1, pages L164–L168, October 2009
How to Cite
Giacomazzo, B., Rezzolla, L. and Baiotti, L. (2009), Can magnetic fields be detected during the inspiral of binary neutron stars?. Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society: Letters, 399: L164–L168. doi: 10.1111/j.1745-3933.2009.00745.x
- Issue published online: 1 OCT 2009
- Article first published online: 10 SEP 2009
- Accepted 2009 August 21. Received 2009 August 20; in original form 2009 August 7
- gravitational waves;
- magnetic fields;
- binaries: general;
- stars: neutron
Using accurate and fully general-relativistic simulations we assess the effect that magnetic fields have on the gravitational-wave emission produced during the inspiral and merger of magnetized neutron stars. In particular, we show that magnetic fields have an impact after the merger, because they are amplified by a Kelvin–Helmholtz instability, but also during the inspiral, most likely because the magnetic tension reduces the stellar tidal deformation for extremely large initial magnetic fields, B0≳ 1017 G. We quantify the influence of magnetic fields by computing the overlap, , between the waveforms produced during the inspiral by magnetized and unmagnetized binaries. We find that for any realistic magnetic field strength B0≲ 1014 G the overlap during the inspiral is and is quite insensitive to the mass of the neutron stars. Only for unrealistically large magnetic fields like B0≃ 1017 G the overlap does decrease noticeably, becoming at our resolutions for stars with baryon masses Mb≃ 1.4/1.6 M⊙, respectively. Because neutron stars are expected to merge with magnetic fields ∼108–1010 G and because present detectors are sensitive to , we conclude that it is very unlikely that the present detectors will be able to discern the presence of magnetic fields during the inspiral of neutron stars.