Modeling gravitational waves from exotic compact objects

by Alexandre Toubiana

In the standard astrophysical paradigm, the only compact objects (with C>0.1) are black holes (BHs) and neutron stars (NSs). However, extensions of General Relativity (GR) and/or of the Standard Model can give rise to “exotic compact objects” (ECOs), which mimic the gravitational behavior of BHs and NSs to varying degrees. Thus, exotic compact objects can be difficult to distinguish from BHs and NSs in the inspiral phase of the binaries observed by gravitational-wave detectors, but significant differences may be present in the merger and post-merger signal.

In this talk, I will briefly review some models of ECOs and numerical simulations of non-BH binaries. Based on these results, I will present a toy model aiming to capture the main features of the full GW signal emitted by ECO binaries and use it to assess the detectability of such exotic signals with current and future detectors, and whether they can be distinguished from black hole binaries.