The first direct detection of a gravitational wave from a binary neutron star merger, GW170817, was also the first event to be observed both by gravitational-wave detectors and telescopes. These “multimessenger” observations provided an opportunity to constrain the equation of state of the dense nuclear matter inside of neutron stars. The equation of state determines the size of the stars, as well as how much they are tidally deformed as they spiral into each other. The stars' tidal deformability is encoded in the emitted gravitational wave. However, the gravitational wave is only weakly dependent on the these parameters, making the equation of state difficult to infer from gravitational-wave data alone. I will show how combining chiral effective field theory with multimessenger observations of GW170817 yields the most stringent constrains on neutron-star radii to date. I will also discuss the implications of this measurement for future detections.
All interested graduate students and faculty are invited to attend.