Items 1-3 and 7: `guaranteed science'. Items 4-6: uncertain, but potential big payoffs.
|1. Exotic binary stars||Precision tests of weak field General Relativity.
(P,e,r,a,M) known from optical/IR or radio observations for some sources.
||Confusion limit sets
|2. 1-10^4 Msun black holes scattered into 10^6-10^8 Msun black holes in galactic nuclei||Waveforms can be computed exactly by perturbation theory.
||Masses of scattered black holes depend upon IMF and mass segregation
in central parsec of galactic nuclei.
Event rate depends on rate of scattering into loss cone. (triaxiality, bars, Brownian wandering of black hole)
Provides census of M, a/M, spin directions of black holes in non-active nuclei (e.g. M31, M32).
In active nuclei, accretion disk drag can compete with gravitational radiation reaction to determine rate of orbital decay: surface mass density of inner accretion disk.
Clean pure gravitaional two-body problem: no tomographic inversion (X-ray Fe lines) or gas-dynamic modeling (QPOs)
|3.Mergers of 10^6-10^8 Msun black h in the nuclei of merging galaxies||For lower-mass holes, detectable anywhere in universe with S/N of thousands.
||Final truth check on AGN models and velocity dispersion rises in non-AGN:
Merging rate of BHs depends on:
|To reach supermassive >10^7Msun, argues for
|4. Formation of supermassive black holes||Easily detectable if formed by
Undetectable if grown by gas accretion from small seed.
|5. Cosmic Backgrounds||All waves produced since Planck era reach LISA! Frequency range corresponds
to horizon scale at Electroweak symmetry breaking (100GeV).
Consensus for baryogenesis at Electroweak transition: requires first-order phase transition.
Really long shots: strings, nonstandard inflation, QCD phase transition
|6. Discover dark matter||If dark matter in galaxy halos is 10^4-10^6 Msun black holes (Ostriker-Lacey) reaching to radii where dynamical friction is important: bright sky!|
|7. The Unknown and Unexpected|