Simulations of binary black holes in scalar field cosmologies
Tallaksen, Katharine Christina
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Numerical relativity allows us to solve Einstein's equations and study astrophysical phenomena we may not be able to observe directly, such as the very early universe. In this work, we examine the effect of scalar field cosmologies on binary black hole systems. These scalar field cosmologies were studied using cosmological bubbles, spherically symmetric structures that may have powered inflationary phase transitions. The Einstein Toolkit and Maya, developed at Georgia Tech, were used to simulate these systems. Systems studied include cosmological bubbles, binary black holes in vacuum, and binary black holes embedded within cosmological bubbles. Differences in mass accretion, merger trajectories, and characteristic gravitational waveforms will be presented for these systems. In the future, analyzing the parameter space of these waveforms may present a method to discover a gravitational wave signature characteristic to these systems and possibly detectable by the Laser Interferometer Gravitational-Wave Observatory.