Wolf-Rayet – black hole binaries as progenitors of binary black holes

Dott. Erika Korb (University of Padova, Italy) – Premio Geppina Coppola

10 Novembre 2023
11:30, Aula Piazzi


The properties of binaries hosting a Wolf-Rayet star and a black hole suggest that such systems could be the progenitors of binary black holes merging via gravitational wave emission. With the population-synthesis code SEVN, we quantified the impact of different assumptions on metallicity, common envelope efficiency, core-collapse supernova, and natal kick models on the evolution of a binary population representative of the one observed in the Milky Way. Within the considered parameter space, we found that more than 90 % of merging binary black holes had a progenitor in the Wolf-Rayet – black hole configuration. Some of them exhibit properties similar to Cyg X-3, the only Wolf-Rayet — black hole candidate in the Milky Way: future observations of Wolf-Rayet — black hole systems could be the “Rosetta stone” to calibrate models for the formation of binary black holes.