Journal Article

Resonant trapping of stars by merging massive black hole binaries

Naoki Seto and Takayuki Muto

in Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society

Published on behalf of The Royal Astronomical Society

Volume 415, issue 4, pages 3824-3830
Published in print August 2011 | ISSN: 0035-8711
Published online August 2011 | e-ISSN: 1365-2966 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/j.1365-2966.2011.18988.x
Resonant trapping of stars by merging massive black hole binaries

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A massive black hole binary might resonantly trap a star (e.g. a white dwarf) and the gas released by its tidal disruption might emit electromagnetic wave signals around the coalescence of the binary. With post-Newtonian equations of motion including gravitational radiation reaction, we numerically studied resonant trappings by black hole binaries with a mass ratio of 1/100. It is found that 2:1 (and simultaneously 4:2) mean motion resonances of the binaries would be strong and could, in principle, draw small third objects deep into relativistic regimes (e.g. ∼10 Schwarzschild radii). The inclinations of the trapped objects could increase significantly and, in some cases, retrograde orbits could be realized eventually.

Keywords: gravitational waves; binaries: close

Journal Article.  5404 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Astronomy and Astrophysics

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