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  1. Abstract

    The upcoming Vera Rubin Observatory’s Legacy Survey of Space and Time (LSST) opens a new opportunity to rapidly survey the southern sky at optical wavelengths (i.e.,ugrizybands). In this study, we aim to test the possibility of using LSST observations to constrain the mass and velocity of different kilonova (KN) ejecta components from the observation of a combined set of light curves from afterglows ofγ-ray bursts and KNe. We used a sample of simulated light curves from the aforementioned events as they would have been seen during the LSST survey to study how the choice of observing strategies impacts the parameter estimation. We found that the design of observing strategy that is the best compromise between light-curve coverage, observed filters, and reliability of the fit involves a high number of visits with long-gap pairs of about 4 hr every two nights in the same or different filters. The features of the observing strategy will allow us to recognize the different stages of the evolution of the light curve and gather observations in at least three filters.

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  2. Abstract

    Matched-filtering detection techniques for gravitational-wave (GW) signals in ground-based interferometers rely on having well-modeled templates of the GW emission. Such techniques have been traditionally used in searches for compact binary coalescences (CBCs), and have been employed in all known GW detections so far. However, interesting science cases aside from compact mergers do not yet have accurate enough modeling to make matched filtering possible, including core-collapse supernovae and sources where stochasticity may be involved. Therefore the development of techniques to identify sources of these types is of significant interest. In this paper, we present a method of anomaly detection based on deep recurrent autoencoders to enhance the search region to unmodeled transients. We use a semi-supervised strategy that we name‘Gravitational Wave Anomalous Knowledge’(GWAK). While the semi-supervised approach to this problem entails a potential reduction in accuracy compared to fully supervised methods, it offers a generalizability advantage by enhancing the reach of experimental sensitivity beyond the constraints of pre-defined signal templates. We construct a low-dimensional embedded space using the GWAK method, capturing the physical signatures of distinct signals on each axis of the space. By introducing signal priors that capture some of the salient features of GW signals, we allow for the recovery of sensitivity even when an unmodeled anomaly is encountered. We show that regions of the GWAK space can identify CBCs, detector glitches and also a variety of unmodeled astrophysical sources.

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  3. An advanced LIGO and Virgo’s third observing run brought another binary neutron star merger (BNS) and the first neutron-star black hole mergers. While no confirmed kilonovae were identified in conjunction with any of these events, continued improvements of analyses surrounding GW170817 allow us to project constraints on the Hubble Constant (H0), the Galactic enrichment fromr-process nucleosynthesis, and ultra-dense matter possible from forthcoming events. Here, we describe the expected constraints based on the latest expected event rates from the international gravitational-wave network and analyses of GW170817. We show the expected detection rate of gravitational waves and their counterparts, as well as how sensitive potential constraints are to the observed numbers of counterparts. We intend this analysis as support for the community when creating scientifically driven electromagnetic follow-up proposals. During the next observing run O4, we predict an annual detection rate of electromagnetic counterparts from BNS of0.430.26+0.58(1.971.2+2.68) for the Zwicky Transient Facility (Rubin Observatory).

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    Free, publicly-accessible full text available November 21, 2024
  4. Abstract

    The classification of variable objects provides insight into a wide variety of astrophysics ranging from stellar interiors to galactic nuclei. The Zwicky Transient Facility (ZTF) provides time-series observations that record the variability of more than a billion sources. The scale of these data necessitates automated approaches to make a thorough analysis. Building on previous work, this paper reports the results of the ZTF Source Classification Project (SCoPe), which trains neural network and XGBoost (XGB) machine-learning (ML) algorithms to perform dichotomous classification of variable ZTF sources using a manually constructed training set containing 170,632 light curves. We find that several classifiers achieve high precision and recall scores, suggesting the reliability of their predictions for 209,991,147 light curves across 77 ZTF fields. We also identify the most important features for XGB classification and compare the performance of the two ML algorithms, finding a pattern of higher precision among XGB classifiers. The resulting classification catalog is available to the public, and the software developed forSCoPeis open source and adaptable to future time-domain surveys.

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  5. Abstract

    The multi-messenger detection of the gravitational-wave signal GW170817, the corresponding kilonova AT2017gfo and the short gamma-ray burst GRB170817A, as well as the observed afterglow has delivered a scientific breakthrough. For an accurate interpretation of all these different messengers, one requires robust theoretical models that describe the emitted gravitational-wave, the electromagnetic emission, and dense matter reliably. In addition, one needs efficient and accurate computational tools to ensure a correct cross-correlation between the models and the observational data. For this purpose, we have developed the Nuclear-physics and Multi-Messenger Astrophysics framework NMMA. The code allows incorporation of nuclear-physics constraints at low densities as well as X-ray and radio observations of isolated neutron stars. In previous works, the NMMA code has allowed us to constrain the equation of state of supranuclear dense matter, to measure the Hubble constant, and to compare dense-matter physics probed in neutron-star mergers and in heavy-ion collisions, and to classify electromagnetic observations and perform model selection. Here, we show an extension of the NMMA code as a first attempt of analyzing the gravitational-wave signal, the kilonova, and the gamma-ray burst afterglow simultaneously. Incorporating all available information, we estimate the radius of a 1.4Mneutron star to be$$R=11.9{8}_{-0.40}^{+0.35}$$R=11.980.40+0.35km.

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    Free, publicly-accessible full text available December 1, 2024

    The upcoming Laser Interferometer Space Antenna (LISA) will detect a large gravitational-wave foreground of Galactic white dwarf binaries. These sources are exceptional for their probable detection at electromagnetic wavelengths, some long before LISA flies. Studies in both gravitational and electromagnetic waves will yield strong constraints on system parameters not achievable through measurements of one messenger alone. In this work, we present a Bayesian inference pipeline and simulation suite in which we study potential constraints on binaries in a variety of configurations. We show how using LISA detections and parameter estimation can significantly improve constraints on system parameters when used as a prior for the electromagnetic analyses. We also provide rules of thumb for how current measurements will benefit from LISA measurements in the future.

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  7. Multimessenger searches for binary neutron star (BNS) and neutron star-black hole (NSBH) mergers are currently one of the most exciting areas of astronomy. The search for joint electromagnetic and neutrino counterparts to gravitational wave (GW)s has resumed with ALIGO’s, AdVirgo’s and KAGRA’s fourth observing run (O4). To support this effort, public semiautomated data products are sent in near real-time and include localization and source properties to guide complementary observations. In preparation for O4, we have conducted a study using a simulated population of compact binaries and a mock data challenge (MDC) in the form of a real-time replay to optimize and profile the software infrastructure and scientific deliverables. End-toend performance was tested, including data ingestion, running online search pipelines, performing annotations, and issuing alerts to the astrophysics community. We present an overview of the low-latency infrastructure and the performance of the data products that are now being released during O4 based on the MDC. We report the expected median latency for the preliminary alert of full bandwidth searches (29.5 s) and show consistency and accuracy of released data products using the MDC. We report the expected median latency for triggers from early warning searches (−3.1 s), which are new in O4 and target neutron star mergers during inspiral phase. This paper provides a performance overview for LIGO-Virgo-KAGRA (LVK) low-latency alert infrastructure and data products using theMDCand serves as a useful reference for the interpretation of O4 detections.

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    Free, publicly-accessible full text available April 30, 2025
  8. Abstract

    Using the Zwicky Transient Facility, in 2021 February we identified the first known outburst of the black hole X-ray transient XTE J1859+226 since its discovery in 1999. The outburst was visible at X-ray, UV, and optical wavelengths for less than 20 days, substantially shorter than its full outburst of 320 days in 1999, and the observed peak luminosity was 2 orders of magnitude lower. Its peak bolometric luminosity was only 2 × 1035erg s−1, implying an Eddington fraction of about 3 × 10−4. The source remained in the hard spectral state throughout the outburst. From optical spectroscopy measurements we estimate an outer disk radius of 1011cm. The low observed X-ray luminosity is not sufficient to irradiate the entire disk, but we observe a surprising exponential decline in the X-ray light curve. These observations highlight the potential of optical and infrared synoptic surveys to discover low-luminosity activity from X-ray transients.

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