Title page for ETD etd-03272008-092832

Type of Document Dissertation
Author Hanna, Chad
Author's Email Address channa@phys.lsu.edu
URN etd-03272008-092832
Title Searching for Gravitational Waves from Binary Systems in Non-Stationary Data
Degree Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.)
Department Physics & Astronomy
Advisory Committee
Advisor Name Title
Gabriela Gonzalez Committee Chair
Joseph Giaime Committee Member
Juhan Frank Committee Member
Luis Lehner Committee Member
Guoxiang Gu Dean's Representative
  • Neutron Star
  • Black Hole
Date of Defense 2008-03-14
Availability unrestricted
The gravitational wave detectors at the LIGO Observatories have

achieved record sensitivity to gravitational-waves produced by

astrophysical systems. The LIGO Scientific Collaboration has analyzed

data taken in several science runs, searching for different

signals. We describe a search for black holes with less than a

solar mass in the LIGO data taken from February 22 to March 24, 2005.

No gravitational waves were found, and an upper limit was set on the

rate of mergers of such binary systems. This search, as well as other

searches for binary systems, are affected by non-stationary noise. We

describe the sophisticated pipeline that attempted to reduce the

false trigger rate while maximizing the sensitivity to simulated

signals. Details regarding this search and interpretation of this

search are presented along with new strategies to increase the

confidence in detection through signal based vetoes and better

template waveforms.

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