A recipe for echoes from exotic compact objects

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Gravitational wave astronomy provides an unprecedented opportunity to test the nature of black holes and search for exotic, compact alternatives. Recent studies have shown that exotic compact objects (ECOs) can ring down in a manner similar to black holes, but can also produce a sequence of distinct pulses resembling the initial ringdown. These “echoes” would provide definite evidence for the existence of ECOs. In this work we study the generation of these echoes in a generic, parameterized model for the ECO, using Green’s functions. We show how to reprocess radiation in the near-horizon region of a Schwarzschild black hole into the radiation from the corresponding source in an ECO spacetime. Our methods allow us to understand the connection between distinct echoes and ringing at the resonant frequencies of the compact object. We find that the quasinormal mode ringing in the black hole spacetime plays a central role in determining the shape of the first few echoes. We use this observation to develop a simple template for echo waveforms. This template performs well over a variety of ECO parameters, and with improvements may prove useful in the analysis of gravitational waves.
Related Arxiv #: https://arxiv.org/abs/1706.06155