Outflow-driven Transients from the Birth of Binary Black Holes. II. Primary-induced Accretion Transients

Shigeo S. Kimura, Kohta Murase, Peter Mészáros

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We discuss the electromagnetic radiation from newborn binary black holes (BBHs). As a consequence of the evolution of massive stellar binaries, a binary consisting of a primary black hole (BH) and a secondary Wolf-Rayet star is expected as a BBH progenitor system. We investigate optical transients from the birth of BBHs powered by the Bondi-Hoyle-Lyttleton accretion onto the primary BH, which occur ∼1-10 Gyr earlier than gravitational-wave signals at the BH-BH merger. When the secondary massive star collapses into a BH, it may eject a fraction of its outer material and may form a disk around the primary BH and induces a powerful disk wind. These primary-induced winds can lead to optical transients with a kinetic energy of ∼1047-3 ×1048 erg, an ejecta velocity of 108-109 cm s-1, a duration of a few days, and an absolute magnitude ranging from about -11 to -14. The light curves and late-time spectra of these transients are distinctive from those of ordinary supernovae, and detection of this type of transient is possible by future optical transient surveys if the event rate of this transient is comparable to the merger rate of BBHs. This paper focuses on the emissions from disk-driven transients induced by the primary BH, different from Paper I, which focuses on wind-driven transients from the tidally locked secondary massive star.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number53
JournalAstrophysical Journal
Issue number1
StatePublished - Dec 10 2017

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Astronomy and Astrophysics
  • Space and Planetary Science


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