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    The launch of space-based gravitational-wave (GW) detectors (e.g. Laser Interferometry Space Antenna; LISA) and current and upcoming Pulsar Timing Arrays will extend the GW window to low frequencies, opening new investigations into dynamical processes involving massive black hole binaries (MBHBs) and their mergers across cosmic time. MBHBs are expected to be among the primary sources for the upcoming low-frequency (10−4–10−1 Hz) window probed by LISA. It is important to investigate the expected supermassive BH merger rates and associated signals, to determine how potential LISA events are affected by physics included in current models. To study this, we post-process the large population of MBHBs in the Illustris simulation to account for dynamical friction time delays associated with BH infall/inspiral. We show that merger delays associated with binary evolution have the potential to decrease the expected merger rates, with $M_{\rm {BH}}\ \gt\ 10^6\ \mathrm{M}_\odot$ MBHBs (the lowest mass in Illustris) decreasing from ∼3 to ∼0.1 yr−1, and shifting the merger peak from z ∼2 to ∼1.25. During this time, we estimate that accretion grows the total merging mass by as much as 7x the original mass. Importantly, however, dynamical friction-associated delays (which shift the mergers toward lower redshift and higher masses) lead to a stronger signal/strain for the emitted GWs in the LISA band, increasing mean frequency from 10−3.1 to 10−3.4–10−4.0 Hz, and mean strain from 10−17.2 to 10−16.3–10−15.3. Finally, we show that after including a merger delay and associated MBH growth, mergers still tend to lie on the typical MBH–M* relation, but with an increased likelihood of an undermassive BH.

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  2. We report the growth of nanoscale hafnium dioxide (HfO2) and zirconium dioxide (ZrO2) thin films using remote plasma-enhanced atomic layer deposition (PE-ALD), and the fabrication of complementary metal-oxide semiconductor (CMOS) integrated circuits using the HfO2 and ZrO2 thin films as the gate oxide. Tetrakis (dimethylamino) hafnium (Hf[N(CH3)2]4) and tetrakis (dimethylamino) zirconium (IV) (Zr[N(CH3)2]4) were used as the precursors, while O2 gas was used as the reactive gas. The PE-ALD-grown HfO2 and ZrO2 thin films were analyzed using X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS), X-ray diffraction (XRD), and high-resolution transmission electron microscopy (HRTEM). The XPS measurements show that the ZrO2 film has the atomic concentrations of 34% Zr, 2% C, and 64% O while the HfO2 film has the atomic concentrations of 29% Hf, 11% C, and 60% O. The HRTEM and XRD measurements show both HfO2 and ZrO2 films have polycrystalline structures. n-channel and p-channel metal-oxide semiconductor field-effect transistors (nFETs and pFETs), CMOS inverters, and CMOS ring oscillators were fabricated to test the quality of the HfO2 and ZrO2 thin films as the gate oxide. Current-voltage (IV) curves, transfer characteristics, and oscillation waveforms were measured from the fabricated transistors, inverters, and oscillators, respectively. The experimental results measured from the HfO2 and ZrO2 thin films were compared. 
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