Power Spectral Density Uncertainty and Gravitational-Wave Parameter Estimation

November 19, 2021
Recorded 19 November 2021. Sylvia Biscoveanu of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology presents "The Effect of Power Spectral Density Uncertainty on Gravitational-Wave Parameter Estimation" at IPAM's Workshop III: Source inference and parameter estimation in Gravitational Wave Astronomy. Abstract: One of the key components for characterizing individual compact binary coalescences detected in gravitational waves is an estimate of the power spectral density (PSD) of each interferometer included in the analysis. The PSD is a frequency-domain representation of the noise properties of the detector and is typically assumed to be known with infinite precision when performing Bayesian parameter estimation. In this talk, I will describe the two primary techniques used to estimate the PSD and the ways in which the uncertainty on these measurements can be incorporated into the parameter estimation framework. I will highlight how ignoring the uncertainty on the PSD can lead to systematic biases, particularly when combining multiple events, and place PSD uncertainty in the context of other sources of systematic error. Learn more online: