What's the difference between Neutron Star-Black Hole Merger (NSBH) and Black Hole-Neutron Star Merger (BHNS)? Are they the same names for the same events or is there any difference between them?

I have seen the two terms in the following papers: A Brief Overview of Black Hole-Neutron Star Mergers (BHNS) and Gotta catch ’em all: the first neutron star-black hole merger detection! (NSBH)


1 Answer 1


Both articles are referring to the detection of gravitational wave sources where one component is of low enough mass to be considered a likely neutron star, whereas the other is more massive, and too massive to be a neutron star, and therefore is likely to be a black hole$^1$.

The is no difference between a NSBH binary and a BHNS binary as the terms are used in these articles. The neutron star will always be the least massive of the two components.

$^1$ The lack of good data at very high gravitational wave frequencies and the lack of definitive electromagnetic (light) counterparts to the mergers (expected from neutron stars but not black holes) prevents definite statements about the nature of the lower mass components.


You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .