The detection of gravitational waves (GWs) has opened a new window into the Universe by enabling direct studies of mergers of massive, compact objects. Some of the largest impacts on our understanding of these events will come when combining the GW data with their electromagnetic (EM) counterparts. However, due to the large area (> 100 deg2) localization of LIGO events, identifying their correct EM counterparts is no small feat and is akin to finding a needle in a haystack. This search is and will continue to be difficult task due to the large (>100 deg2) localization of LIGO events. To overcome this challenge several teams used a galaxy-targeted approach to successfully locate the EM counterpart to the neutron star-neutron star merger event GW170817. In this talk I introduce a new service of the NASA/IPAC Extragalactic Database (NED) that will provide prioritized lists of galaxies located within future LIGO 90% probability contours to facilitate searches for EM counterparts, starting with the O3 run scheduled to begin in April 2019. I will give an overview of the service, as well as an analysis of the local Universe NED galaxy sub-sample and comparisons with other local galaxy lists.
American Astronomical Society Meeting Abstracts #234
- Pub Date:
- June 2019