May 8 – 12, 2023
Perimeter Institute for Theoretical Physics
America/Toronto timezone

Looking for Echoes from Quantum Black Holes

May 11, 2023, 9:45 AM
PI/4-405 - Bob Room (Perimeter Institute for Theoretical Physics)

PI/4-405 - Bob Room

Perimeter Institute for Theoretical Physics



Jahed Abedi (University of Stavanger)


I present an unprecedented template-based search for stimulated emission of Hawking radiation (or Boltzmann echoes) by combining the gravitational wave data from 65 binary black hole merger events observed by the LIGO/Virgo collaboration. With a careful Bayesian inference approach, I found no statistically significant evidence for this signal in either of the 3 Gravitational Wave Transient Catalogs GWTC-1, GWTC-2 and GWTC-3. However, the data cannot yet conclusively rule out the presence of Boltzmann echoes either, with the Bayesian evidence ranging within 0.3-1.6 for most events, and a common (non-vanishing) echo amplitude for all mergers being disfavoured at only 2:5 odds. The only exception is GW190521, the most massive and confidently detected event ever observed, which shows a positive evidence of 9.2 for stimulated Hawking radiation. An optimal combination of posteriors yields an upper limit of A<0.42 (at 90% confidence level) for a universal echo amplitude, whereas A∼1 was predicted in the canonical model. The next generation of gravitational wave detectors such as LISA, Einstein Telescope, and Cosmic Explorer can draw a definitive conclusion on the quantum nature of black hole horizons.

Presentation materials

External references