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A new code for parameter estimation in searches for gravitational waves from known pulsars

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Published
  • M. Pitkin
  • C. Gill
  • J. Veitch
  • E. Macdonald
  • Graham Woan
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Abstract

We describe the consistency testing of a new code for gravitational wave signal parameter estimation in known pulsar searches. The code uses an implementation of nested sampling to explore the likelihood volume. Using fake signals and simulated noise we compare this to a previous code that calculated the signal parameter posterior distributions on both a grid and using a crude Markov chain Monte Carlo (MCMC) method. We define a new parameterisation of two orientation angles of neutron stars used in the signal model (the initial phase and polarisation angle), which breaks a degeneracy between them and allows more efficient exploration of those parameters. Finally, we briefly describe potential areas for further study and the uses of this code in the future.