Caltech/JPL Association for Gravitational-Wave Research Seminar
Within the next few years, LIGO is expected to make the first detections of gravitational waves from binary systems containing neutron stars and/or black holes. Significant challenges remain in our ability to extract the maximum amount of physics from LIGO's observations, particularly for neutron star--black hole (NSBH) and binary black hole (BBH) systems. I will present the results of recent investigations into the effect of spin on LIGO's search and parameter measurement ability. I will describe the challenges that still face us, focusing on the areas where coupling numerical simulations and/or electromagnetic observations with LIGO's detections can yield new insights into the astrophysics of NSBH and BBH systems.