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  1. Fugitive methane (CH4) and carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions at municipal solid waste (MSW) landfills constitute one of the major anthropogenic sources of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions to the atmosphere. In recent years, biocovers involving the addition of organic-rich amendments to landfill cover soils is proposed to promote microbial oxidation of CH4 to CO2. However, most of the organic amendments used have limitations. Biochar, a solid byproduct obtained from gasification of biomass under anoxic or low oxygen conditions, has characteristics that are favorable for enhanced microbial oxidation in landfill covers. Recent investigations have shown the significant potential of biochar-amended cover soils in mitigating the CH4 emissions from MSW landfills. Although the CH4 emissions are mitigated, there is still considerable amount of CO2 that is emitted to the atmosphere as a result of microbial oxidation of CH4 in landfill covers as well as the CO2 derived from MSW decomposition. Basic oxygen furnace (BOF) slag is a product of steel making has great potential for CO2 sequestration due to its strong alkaline buffering and high carbonation capacity. In an ongoing project, funded by the U.S. National Science Foundation, the potential use of BOF slag in landfill covers along with biochar-amended soils to mitigatemore »both CH4 and CO2 emissions is being investigated. This paper presents the initial results from this study and it includes detailed physical and chemical and leachability characteristics of BOF slag, and a series of batch tests conducted on BOF slag to determine its CH4 and CO2 uptake capacity. The effect of moisture content on the carbonation capacity of BOF slag was also evaluated by conducting batch tests at different moisture contents. In addition, small column experiments were conducted to evaluate the gas migration, transport parameters and the CO2 sequestration potential of BOF slag under simulated landfill gas conditions. The result from the batch and column tests show a significant uptake of CO2 by BOF slag for the tested conditions and demonstrates excellent potential for its use in a landfill cover system.« less
  2. Free, publicly-accessible full text available August 1, 2023
  3. Free, publicly-accessible full text available June 1, 2023
  4. Abstract Isolated neutron stars that are asymmetric with respect to their spin axis are possible sources of detectable continuous gravitational waves. This paper presents a fully coherent search for such signals from eighteen pulsars in data from LIGO and Virgo’s third observing run (O3). For known pulsars, efficient and sensitive matched-filter searches can be carried out if one assumes the gravitational radiation is phase-locked to the electromagnetic emission. In the search presented here, we relax this assumption and allow both the frequency and the time derivative of the frequency of the gravitational waves to vary in a small range around those inferred from electromagnetic observations. We find no evidence for continuous gravitational waves, and set upper limits on the strain amplitude for each target. These limits are more constraining for seven of the targets than the spin-down limit defined by ascribing all rotational energy loss to gravitational radiation. In an additional search, we look in O3 data for long-duration (hours–months) transient gravitational waves in the aftermath of pulsar glitches for six targets with a total of nine glitches. We report two marginal outliers from this search, but find no clear evidence for such emission either. The resulting duration-dependent strain uppermore »limits do not surpass indirect energy constraints for any of these targets.« less
    Free, publicly-accessible full text available June 1, 2023
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  6. Free, publicly-accessible full text available April 1, 2023
  7. Abstract We search for gravitational-wave signals associated with gamma-ray bursts (GRBs) detected by the Fermi and Swift satellites during the second half of the third observing run of Advanced LIGO and Advanced Virgo (2019 November 1 15:00 UTC–2020 March 27 17:00 UTC). We conduct two independent searches: a generic gravitational-wave transients search to analyze 86 GRBs and an analysis to target binary mergers with at least one neutron star as short GRB progenitors for 17 events. We find no significant evidence for gravitational-wave signals associated with any of these GRBs. A weighted binomial test of the combined results finds no evidence for subthreshold gravitational-wave signals associated with this GRB ensemble either. We use several source types and signal morphologies during the searches, resulting in lower bounds on the estimated distance to each GRB. Finally, we constrain the population of low-luminosity short GRBs using results from the first to the third observing runs of Advanced LIGO and Advanced Virgo. The resulting population is in accordance with the local binary neutron star merger rate.
    Free, publicly-accessible full text available April 1, 2023
  8. Free, publicly-accessible full text available March 1, 2023
  9. Intermediate-mass black holes (IMBHs) span the approximate mass range 100−10 5   M ⊙ , between black holes (BHs) that formed by stellar collapse and the supermassive BHs at the centers of galaxies. Mergers of IMBH binaries are the most energetic gravitational-wave sources accessible by the terrestrial detector network. Searches of the first two observing runs of Advanced LIGO and Advanced Virgo did not yield any significant IMBH binary signals. In the third observing run (O3), the increased network sensitivity enabled the detection of GW190521, a signal consistent with a binary merger of mass ∼150  M ⊙ providing direct evidence of IMBH formation. Here, we report on a dedicated search of O3 data for further IMBH binary mergers, combining both modeled (matched filter) and model-independent search methods. We find some marginal candidates, but none are sufficiently significant to indicate detection of further IMBH mergers. We quantify the sensitivity of the individual search methods and of the combined search using a suite of IMBH binary signals obtained via numerical relativity, including the effects of spins misaligned with the binary orbital axis, and present the resulting upper limits on astrophysical merger rates. Our most stringent limit is for equal mass and alignedmore »spin BH binary of total mass 200  M ⊙ and effective aligned spin 0.8 at 0.056 Gpc −3 yr −1 (90% confidence), a factor of 3.5 more constraining than previous LIGO-Virgo limits. We also update the estimated rate of mergers similar to GW190521 to 0.08 Gpc −3 yr −1 .« less
    Free, publicly-accessible full text available March 1, 2023