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Title: Liverpool Telescope follow-up of candidate electromagnetic counterparts during the first run of Advanced LIGO
Authors: Copperwheat, C. M.
Steele, I. A.
Piascik, A. S.
Bersier, D.
Bode, M. F.
Collins, C. A.
Darnley, M. J.
Galloway, D. K.
Gomboc, A.
Kobayashi, S.
Lamb, G. P.
Levan, A. J.
Mazzali, P. A.
Mundell, C. G.
Pian, E.
Pollacco, D.
Steeghs, D.
Tanvir, Nial R.
Ulaczyk, K.
Wiersema, K.
First Published: 2016
Publisher: Oxford University Press (OUP) for The Royal Astronomical Society
Citation: Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society, 2016, in press
Abstract: The first direct detection of gravitational waves was made in late 2015 with the Advanced LIGO detectors. By prior arrangement, a worldwide collaboration of electromagnetic follow-up observers were notified of candidate gravitational wave events during the first science run, and many facilities were engaged in the search for counterparts. No counterparts were identified, which is in line with expectations given that the events were classified as black hole - black hole mergers. However these searches laid the foundation for similar follow-up campaigns in future gravitational wave detector science runs, in which the detection of neutron star merger events with observable electromagnetic counterparts is much more likely. Three alerts were issued to the electromagnetic collaboration over the course of the first science run, which lasted from September 2015 to January 2016. Two of these alerts were associated with the gravitational wave events since named GW150914 and GW151226. In this paper we provide an overview of the Liverpool Telescope contribution to the follow-up campaign over this period. Given the hundreds of square degree uncertainty in the sky position of any gravitational wave event, efficient searching for candidate counterparts required survey telescopes with large (~degrees) fields-of-view. The role of the Liverpool Telescope was to provide follow-up classification spectroscopy of any candidates. We followed candidates associated with all three alerts, observing 1, 9 and 17 candidates respectively. We classify the majority of the transients we observed as supernovae.
ISSN: 0035-8711
eISSN: 1365-2966
Embargo on file until: 1-Jan-10000
Version: Post-print
Status: Peer-reviewed
Type: Journal Article
Rights: Copyright © the authors, 2016. This version of the article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution-Non Commercial-No Derivatives License ( ), which permits use and distribution in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited, the use is non-commercial and no modifications or adaptations are made.
Description: Following publication the above license will apply.
Appears in Collections:Published Articles, Dept. of Physics and Astronomy

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