Eccentric double white dwarfs as lisa sources in globular clusters

B. Willems*, V. Kalogera, A. Vecchio, N. Ivanova, F. A. Rasio, J. M. Fregeau, K. Belczynski

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

37 Scopus citations


We consider the formation of double white dwarfs (DWDs) through dynamical interactions in globular clusters. Such interactions can give rise to eccentric DWDs, in contrast to the exclusively circular population expected to form in the Galactic disk. We show that for a 5 yr Laser Interferometer Space Antenna (LISA) mission and distances as far as the Large Magellanic Cloud, multiple harmonics from eccentric DWDs can be detected at a signal-to-noise ratio higher than 8 for at least a handful of eccentric DWDs, given their formation rate and typical lifetimes estimated from current cluster simulations. Consequently, the association of eccentricity with stellar-mass LISA sources does not uniquely involve neutron stars, as is usually assumed. Due to the difficulty of detecting (eccentric) DWDs with present and planned electromagnetic observatories, LISA could provide unique dynamical identifications of these systems in globular clusters.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)L59-L62
JournalAstrophysical Journal
Issue number1 PART 2
StatePublished - 2007


  • Binaries: close
  • Gravitational waves
  • White dwarfs

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Astronomy and Astrophysics
  • Space and Planetary Science


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