The recent LIGO observation of gravitational waves from a binary black hole merger triggered several follow-up searches from both electromagnetic wave as well as neutrino observatories. Since in general, it is expected that all matter has been removed from the binary black hole environment long before the merger, no neutrino emission is expected from such mergers. Still, it remains interesting to test this hypothesis. The ratio of the energy emitted in neutrinos with respect to gravitational waves represents a useful parameter to constrain the environment of such astrophysical events. In addition to putting constraints by use of the non-detection of counterpart neutrinos, it is also possible to consider the diffuse neutrino flux measured by the IceCube observatory as the maximum contribution from an extrapolated full class of BBHs. Both methods currently lead to similar bounds on the fraction of energy that can be emitted in neutrinos. Nevertheless, combining both methods should allow to strongly constrain the source population in case of a future neutrino counterpart detection. The proposed approach can and will be applied to potential upcoming LIGO events, including binary neutron stars and black hole-neutron star mergers, for which a neutrino counterpart is expected.
K. Vries, G. Wasseige, J. Frere, et. al.
Fri, 15 Sep 17
Comments: 8 pages, 2 figures. In Proceedings of the 35th International Cosmic Ray Conference (ICRC2017), Busan, Korea