Probing ultralight bosons with black holes and gravitational waves

Ultralight boson particles, if they exist as theorized, could form clouds around rapidly rotating black holes through the phenomenon called superradiance. Such clouds are expected to emit long-lasting, quasimonochromatic gravitational waves that LIGO, Virgo, and KAGRA could detect. Searching for gravitational waves emitted by boson clouds around black holes provides a new cosmic approach to interrogating the existence of ultralight bosons that are difficult to probe with conventional lab experiments. In this talk, I will provide a theoretical overview of the phenomenon, describe the gravitational wave signatures, and discuss the astrophysical sources. I will briefly explain the constraints obtained from a search targeting a known galactic black hole, Cygnus X-1, and show future search prospects targeting other sources.

Ling Sun (ANU)
Join Zoom Meeting Meeting ID: 850 7320 2211 Passcode: 529158
Lijing Shao
Thursday, April 13, 2023 - 3:30PM to Thursday, April 13, 2023 - 4:30PM
Dr Ling Sun received her PhD from the University of Melbourne in 2018. She then worked at the California Institute of Technology as a postdoctoral scholar (2018—2020). She joined the Australian National University as an academic in late 2020. Her research interests include searches for long-transient and continuous gravitational waves, ultralight boson condensates around black holes, testing General Relativity, calibrating gravitational-wave detectors, and the science of next-generation detectors. She is a member of the Laser Interferometer Gravitational-wave Observatory (LIGO) Scientific Collaboration and a Chief Investigator of the Australian Research Council Centre of Excellence for Gravitational Wave Discovery (OzGrav).