Constraints on Cosmic Strings from the LIGO-Virgo Gravitational-Wave Detectors

J. Aasi, M. Agathos, M.G. Beker, A. Bertolini, M.R. Blom, H.J. Bulten, W. Del Pozzo, R. Jonker, T.G.F. Li, J. Meidam, J.F.J. van den Brand, S. van der Putten, Collaboration LIGO Sci, Collaboration Virgo

Research output: Contribution to JournalArticleAcademicpeer-review


Cosmic strings can give rise to a large variety of interesting astrophysical phenomena. Among them, powerful bursts of gravitational waves (GWs) produced by cusps are a promising observational signature. In this Letter we present a search for GWs from cosmic string cusps in data collected by the LIGO and Virgo gravitational wave detectors between 2005 and 2010, with over 625 days of live time. We find no evidence of GW signals from cosmic strings. From this result, we derive new constraints on cosmic string parameters, which complement and improve existing limits from previous searches for a stochastic background of GWs from cosmic microwave background measurements and pulsar timing data. In particular, if the size of loops is given by the gravitational backreaction scale, we place upper limits on the string tension Gμ below 10-8 in some regions of the cosmic string parameter space. © 2014 American Physical Society.
Original languageEnglish
Article number131101
JournalPhysical Review Letters
Issue number13
Publication statusPublished - 2014


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