Resonant Shattering Flares as Multimessenger Probes of the Nuclear Symmetry Energy

Duncan Neill, William G. Newton, David Tsang

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The behaviour of the nuclear symmetry energy near saturation density is important for our understanding of dense nuclear matter. This density dependence can be parameterised by the nuclear symmetry energy and its derivatives evaluated at nuclear saturation density. In this work we show that the core-crust interface mode of a neutron star is sensitive to these parameters, through the (density-weighted) shear-speed within the crust, which is in turn dependent on the symmetry energy profile of dense matter. We calculate the frequency at which the neutron star quadrupole ($\ell = 2$) crust-core interface mode must be driven by the tidal field of its binary partner to trigger a Resonant Shattering Flare (RSF). We demonstrate that coincident multimessenger timing of an RSF and gravitational wave chirp from a neutron star merger would enable us to place constraints on the symmetry energy parameters that are competitive with those from current nuclear experiments.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1129-1143
Number of pages14
JournalMonthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society
Publication statusPublished - 26 Mar 2021


  • astro-ph.HE
  • nucl-th

Cite this