Modeling GW170817 based on numerical relativity and its implications

Masaru Shibata, Sho Fujibayashi, Kenta Hotokezaka, Kenta Kiuchi, Koutarou Kyutoku, Yuichiro Sekiguchi, Masaomi Tanaka

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

303 Citations (Scopus)


Gravitational-wave observation together with a large number of electromagnetic observations shows that the source of the latest gravitational-wave event, GW170817, detected primarily by advanced LIGO, is the merger of a binary neutron star. We attempt to interpret this observational event based on our results of numerical-relativity simulations performed so far, paying particular attention to the optical and infrared observations. We finally reach a conclusion that this event is described consistently by the presence of a long-lived hypermassive or supramassive neutron star as the merger remnant because (i) significant contamination by lanthanide elements along our line of sight to this source can be avoided by the strong neutrino irradiation from it and (ii) it could play a crucial role in producing an ejecta component of appreciable mass with fast motion in the postmerger phase. We also point out that (I) the neutron-star equation of state has to be sufficiently stiff (i.e., the maximum mass of cold spherical neutron stars, Mmax, has to be appreciably higher than 2 M) in order for a long-lived massive neutron star to be formed as the merger remnant for the binary systems of GW170817, for which the initial total mass is 2.73 M, and (II) the absence of optical counterparts associated with relativistic ejecta suggests a not-extremely-high value of Mmax approximately as 2.15-2.25 M.

Original languageEnglish
Article number123012
JournalPhysical Review D
Issue number12
Publication statusPublished - 2017 Dec 15
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physics and Astronomy (miscellaneous)


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