Date of Award


Degree Name



College of Science

Type of Degree


Document Type


First Advisor

Dr. Maria Hamilton, Committee Chairperson

Second Advisor

Dr. Que Huong Nguyen

Third Advisor

Dr. Andre Wehner


The orbital evolution of black hole binaries is described by two main phases: the inspiral and the merger. Using the post-Newtonian (PN) theory for the inspiral phase of the binary, we build up a Mathematica script to obtain strain waveforms for the inspiral. We expand our previous inspiral formulation to include eccentric orbits, which greatly complicates the calculations. Since this model breaks down as the two bodies approach merger, a separate model for the merger and ring-down is required. This part of the evolution is highly non-linear and numerical relativity (NR) is required to simulate this problem. However, this is computationally expensive, so an effort to create an analytic formulation that gives results comparable to NR simulations is essential in gravitational wave modeling. Our previous work used the generic implicit rotating source (gIRS) formulation, but since then another analytic model has been introduced called the Backwards-one-body (BOB) approach. This model is chosen because it builds the waveform based on the physical principles of the problem. We build a BOB model and check to see how it compares with the gIRS model. A complete waveform is built by matching the merger models with the inspiral model when it begins to break down. We compare our model with the Simulating Extreme Spacetimes (SXS) data produced using numerical relativity simulations and find great agreement.


Black holes (Astronomy)

General relativity (Physics)