Liverpool Telescope follow-up of candidate electromagnetic counterparts during the first run of Advanced LIGO

C. M. Copperwheat, I. A. Steele, A. S. Piascik, D. Bersier, M. F. Bode, C. A. Collins, M. J. Darnley, D. K. Galloway, A. Gomboc, S. Kobayashi, G. P. Lamb, A. J. Levan, P. A. Mazzali, C. G. Mundell, E. Pian, D. Pollacco, D. Steeghs, N. R. Tanvir, K. Ulaczyk, K. Wiersema

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

10 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

The first direct detection of gravitational waves was made in late 2015 with the Advanced LIGO detectors. By prior arrangement, a worldwide collaboration of electromagnetic follow-up observers were notified of candidate gravitational wave events during the first science run, and many facilities were engaged in the search for counterparts. No counterparts were identified, which is in line with expectations given that the events were classified as black hole - black hole mergers. However these searches laid the foundation for similar follow-up campaigns in future gravitational wave detector science runs, in which the detection of neutron star merger events with observable electromagnetic counterparts is much more likely. Three alerts were issued to the electromagnetic collaboration over the course of the first science run, which lasted from September 2015 to January 2016. Two of these alerts were associated with the gravitational wave events since named GW150914 and GW151226. In this paper we provide an overview of the Liverpool Telescope contribution to the follow-up campaign over this period. Given the hundreds of square degree uncertainty in the sky position of any gravitational wave event, efficient searching for candidate counterparts required survey telescopes with large (~degrees) fields-of-view. The role of the Liverpool Telescope was to provide follow-up classification spectroscopy of any candidates. We followed candidates associated with all three alerts, observing 1, 9 and 17 candidates respectively. We classify the majority of the transients we observed as supernovae.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)3528-3536
JournalMonthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society
Volume462
Issue number4
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 11 Nov 2016

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LIGO (observatory)
gravitational waves
telescopes
electromagnetism
merger
detectors
field of view
neutron stars
supernovae
sky
spectroscopy
science

Keywords

  • astro-ph.HE

Cite this

Copperwheat, C. M., Steele, I. A., Piascik, A. S., Bersier, D., Bode, M. F., Collins, C. A., ... Wiersema, K. (2016). Liverpool Telescope follow-up of candidate electromagnetic counterparts during the first run of Advanced LIGO. Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society, 462(4), 3528-3536. https://doi.org/10.1093/mnras/stw1849

Liverpool Telescope follow-up of candidate electromagnetic counterparts during the first run of Advanced LIGO. / Copperwheat, C. M.; Steele, I. A.; Piascik, A. S.; Bersier, D.; Bode, M. F.; Collins, C. A.; Darnley, M. J.; Galloway, D. K.; Gomboc, A.; Kobayashi, S.; Lamb, G. P.; Levan, A. J.; Mazzali, P. A.; Mundell, C. G.; Pian, E.; Pollacco, D.; Steeghs, D.; Tanvir, N. R.; Ulaczyk, K.; Wiersema, K.

In: Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society, Vol. 462, No. 4, 11.11.2016, p. 3528-3536.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Copperwheat, CM, Steele, IA, Piascik, AS, Bersier, D, Bode, MF, Collins, CA, Darnley, MJ, Galloway, DK, Gomboc, A, Kobayashi, S, Lamb, GP, Levan, AJ, Mazzali, PA, Mundell, CG, Pian, E, Pollacco, D, Steeghs, D, Tanvir, NR, Ulaczyk, K & Wiersema, K 2016, 'Liverpool Telescope follow-up of candidate electromagnetic counterparts during the first run of Advanced LIGO', Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society, vol. 462, no. 4, pp. 3528-3536. https://doi.org/10.1093/mnras/stw1849
Copperwheat, C. M. ; Steele, I. A. ; Piascik, A. S. ; Bersier, D. ; Bode, M. F. ; Collins, C. A. ; Darnley, M. J. ; Galloway, D. K. ; Gomboc, A. ; Kobayashi, S. ; Lamb, G. P. ; Levan, A. J. ; Mazzali, P. A. ; Mundell, C. G. ; Pian, E. ; Pollacco, D. ; Steeghs, D. ; Tanvir, N. R. ; Ulaczyk, K. ; Wiersema, K. / Liverpool Telescope follow-up of candidate electromagnetic counterparts during the first run of Advanced LIGO. In: Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society. 2016 ; Vol. 462, No. 4. pp. 3528-3536.
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AU - Piascik, A. S.

AU - Bersier, D.

AU - Bode, M. F.

AU - Collins, C. A.

AU - Darnley, M. J.

AU - Galloway, D. K.

AU - Gomboc, A.

AU - Kobayashi, S.

AU - Lamb, G. P.

AU - Levan, A. J.

AU - Mazzali, P. A.

AU - Mundell, C. G.

AU - Pian, E.

AU - Pollacco, D.

AU - Steeghs, D.

AU - Tanvir, N. R.

AU - Ulaczyk, K.

AU - Wiersema, K.

N1 - MNRAS submitted. 10 pages with 3 figures and 3 tables. Updated version with some minor edits to the text

PY - 2016/11/11

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N2 - The first direct detection of gravitational waves was made in late 2015 with the Advanced LIGO detectors. By prior arrangement, a worldwide collaboration of electromagnetic follow-up observers were notified of candidate gravitational wave events during the first science run, and many facilities were engaged in the search for counterparts. No counterparts were identified, which is in line with expectations given that the events were classified as black hole - black hole mergers. However these searches laid the foundation for similar follow-up campaigns in future gravitational wave detector science runs, in which the detection of neutron star merger events with observable electromagnetic counterparts is much more likely. Three alerts were issued to the electromagnetic collaboration over the course of the first science run, which lasted from September 2015 to January 2016. Two of these alerts were associated with the gravitational wave events since named GW150914 and GW151226. In this paper we provide an overview of the Liverpool Telescope contribution to the follow-up campaign over this period. Given the hundreds of square degree uncertainty in the sky position of any gravitational wave event, efficient searching for candidate counterparts required survey telescopes with large (~degrees) fields-of-view. The role of the Liverpool Telescope was to provide follow-up classification spectroscopy of any candidates. We followed candidates associated with all three alerts, observing 1, 9 and 17 candidates respectively. We classify the majority of the transients we observed as supernovae.

AB - The first direct detection of gravitational waves was made in late 2015 with the Advanced LIGO detectors. By prior arrangement, a worldwide collaboration of electromagnetic follow-up observers were notified of candidate gravitational wave events during the first science run, and many facilities were engaged in the search for counterparts. No counterparts were identified, which is in line with expectations given that the events were classified as black hole - black hole mergers. However these searches laid the foundation for similar follow-up campaigns in future gravitational wave detector science runs, in which the detection of neutron star merger events with observable electromagnetic counterparts is much more likely. Three alerts were issued to the electromagnetic collaboration over the course of the first science run, which lasted from September 2015 to January 2016. Two of these alerts were associated with the gravitational wave events since named GW150914 and GW151226. In this paper we provide an overview of the Liverpool Telescope contribution to the follow-up campaign over this period. Given the hundreds of square degree uncertainty in the sky position of any gravitational wave event, efficient searching for candidate counterparts required survey telescopes with large (~degrees) fields-of-view. The role of the Liverpool Telescope was to provide follow-up classification spectroscopy of any candidates. We followed candidates associated with all three alerts, observing 1, 9 and 17 candidates respectively. We classify the majority of the transients we observed as supernovae.

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UR - http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/mnras/stw1849

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