RIT Logo with Text
Pragmatic Approach to Gravitational Radiation Reaction in Binary Black Holes
By Carlos O. Lousto
Published in Physical Review Letters 84, 5251 (Monday, June 5, 2000)


We study the relativistic orbit of binary black holes in systems with small mass ratio. The trajectory of the smaller object (another black hole or a neutron star), represented as a particle, is determined by the geodesic equation on the perturbed massive black hole spacetime. Here we study perturbations around a Schwarzschild black hole using Moncrief's gauge invariant formalism. We decompose the perturbations into ℓ multipoles to show that all ℓ-metric coefficients are C0 at the location of the particle. Summing over ℓ, to reconstruct the full metric, gives a formally divergent result. We succeed in bringing this sum to a Riemann's ζ-function regularization scheme and numerically compute the first-order geodesics.

CCRG Authors

Lousto, Carlos O.