Tom Kimpson

I am a theoretical astrophysicist undertaking research for my PhD within the Astrophysics Group at University College London in the Mullard Space Science Laboratory. My PhD advisors are Kinwah Wu and Silvia Zane.

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Research

My primary research interests are in the multimessenger astrophysics of compact objects. In particular, I am interested and the use of these systems to explore deep questions in fundamental physics (e.g. strong-field general relativity) and astrophysics.

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Gravitational Burst Radiation from Pulsars in the Galactic centre and stellar clusters


Tom Kimpson, Kinwah Wu, Silvia Zane
MNRAS, 2020
arxiv / doi /

Can we do multimessenger astronomy of strong-field regimes? Can pulsar observations act as a prior for GW astronomy?

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Prospects for Fundamental Physics with LISA


Barausse et al., including Tom Kimpson
eprint, 2020
arxiv /

Exploring the potential of the Laser Interferometer Space Antenna (LISA) for probing fundamental physics.

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Pulsar timing in extreme mass ratio binaries: a general relativistic approach


Tom Kimpson, Kinwah Wu, Silvia Zane
MNRAS, 2020
arxiv / doi /

Initial steps on computationally modelling the time-frequency signal from PSR-BH systems. Such a framework is necessary to both inform the detection of a PSR-BH system and to use these systems for tests of fundamental physics and astrophysics.

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Spatial dispersion of light rays propagating through a plasma in Kerr space-time


Tom Kimpson, Kinwah Wu, Silvia Zane
MNRAS, 2019
arxiv / doi /

How does light propagate through a plasma on a background Kerr space-time? We show that the convolution of gravitational and plasma effects gives rise to a dispersion in both space and time, and discuss implications for the detection of gravitationally bent pulsar beams near the Galactic centre

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Hierarchical black hole triples in young star clusters: impact of Kozai-Lidov resonance on mergers


Tom Kimpson, Mario Spera, Michela Mapelli, Brunetto Ziosi
MNRAS, 2016
arxiv / doi /

Mergers of compact object binaries are one of the most powerful sources of gravitational waves (GWs) in the frequency range of second-generation ground-based gravitational wave detectors. WE perform N-Body simulations of young dense star clusters (with a new code based on the Mikkola’s algorithmic regularization scheme, including the 2.5 post-Newtonian term) to explore the formation of hierarchical triples and the effects of Kozai-Lidov (KL) resonances on the merger rate, with implications for GW events




Code

Throughout my research I have written a number of scientific codes, typically relating to time-frequency modelling and signal analysis of non-linear, dynamical astrophysical systems. In order to enable reproducible research I am attempting to make all codes associated with published papers publicly available with documentation. This endeavour is currently a work in progress!

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Ray Tracing in Kerr Spacetime



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What is the path of light through a curved spacetime? Includes gravitational lensing, gravitational and relativistic time dilation, chromatic effects (dispersion in time/space) , blackbox optimisation methods for constructing a consistent time-frequency signal.

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Spin-Curvature dynamics



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Numerical solution to the spin-orbital dynamics of an extended spinning object around a Kerr black hole, accounting for spin-spin, spin-orbit and spin-curvature coupling.




Talks

  • Fundamental Physics with MSP-BH Systems. Perimeter Institute Strong Gravity Group meeting, Canada. Jan 2019.
  • Multimessenger astrophysics of Pulsar EMRBs. 22nd International Conference on General Relativity and Gravitation, Valencia. July 2019.
  • Pulsar Timing in Extreme Mass Ratio Binaries. National Astronomy Meeting, Lancaster. July 2019.
  • Fundamental physics with pulsars . GW@UCL, London. June 2019.
  • Pulsars as probes of strong-field GR. Science Possibilities Investigating Neutron Stars, London. May 2019.
  • General Relativistic Pulsar Timing . Mullard Space Science Laboratory, London. Jan 2019.
  • Spatial dispersion in the strong-field: Implications for PSR timing. INAF Cagliari, Italy. March 2018.
  • Modeling in the gravitational strong field (poster) . Computational Sciences in the 21st Century, London. June 2019.

Other useful stuff


Source code from Leonid Keselman's Jekyll version of Job Barron's page