Analysis of first LIGO science data for stochastic gravitational waves


B. Abbott, California Institute of Technology
R. Abbott, LIGO Livingston
R. Adhikari, LIGO, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
A. Ageev, Lomonosov Moscow State University
B. Allen, University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee
R. Amin, University of Florida
S. B. Anderson, California Institute of Technology
W. G. Anderson, University of Texas at Brownsville and Texas Southmost College
M. Araya, California Institute of Technology
H. Armandula, California Institute of Technology
F. Asiri, California Institute of Technology
P. Aufmuth, Gottfried Wilhelm Leibniz Universität Hannover
C. Aulbert, Max Planck Institute for Gravitational Physics (Albert Einstein Institute)
S. Babak, Cardiff University
R. Balasubramanian, Cardiff University
S. Ballmer, LIGO, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
B. C. Barish, California Institute of Technology
D. Barker, LIGO Hanford
C. Barker-Patton, LIGO Hanford
M. Barnes, California Institute of Technology
B. Barr, University of Glasgow
M. A. Barton, California Institute of Technology
K. Bayer, LIGO, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
R. Beausoleil, Stanford University
K. Belczynski, Northwestern University
R. Bennett, University of Glasgow
S. J. Berukoff, Max Planck Institute for Gravitational Physics (Albert Einstein Institute)
J. Betzwieser, LIGO, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
B. Bhawal, California Institute of Technology
I. A. Bilenko, Lomonosov Moscow State University
G. Billingsley, California Institute of Technology
E. Black, California Institute of Technology
K. Blackburn, California Institute of Technology

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We present the analysis of between 50 and 100 h of coincident interferometric strain data used to search for and establish an upper limit on a stochastic background of gravitational radiation. These data come from the first LIGO science run, during which all three LIGO interferometers were operated over a 2-week period spanning August and September of 2002. The method of cross correlating the outputs of two interferometers is used for analysis. We describe in detail practical signal processing issues that arise when working with real data, and we establish an observational upper limit on a [Formula Presented] power spectrum of gravitational waves. Our 90% confidence limit is [Formula Presented] in the frequency band 40–314 Hz, where [Formula Presented] is the Hubble constant in units of 100 km/sec/Mpc and [Formula Presented] is the gravitational wave energy density per logarithmic frequency interval in units of the closure density. This limit is approximately [Formula Presented] times better than the previous, broadband direct limit using interferometric detectors, and nearly 3 times better than the best narrow-band bar detector limit. As LIGO and other worldwide detectors improve in sensitivity and attain their design goals, the analysis procedures described here should lead to stochastic background sensitivity levels of astrophysical interest. © 2004 The American Physical Society.

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Physical Review D - Particles, Fields, Gravitation and Cosmology

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