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Decoding neutron star observations: Revealing composition through Bayesian neural networks

Authors: Valéria Carvalho, Márcio Ferreira, Tuhin Malik, Constança Providência

Ref.: Phys. Rev. D 108, 4 (2023)

Abstract: We exploit the great potential offered by Bayesian neural networks (BNNs) to directly decipher the internal composition of neutron stars (NSs) based on their macroscopic properties. By analyzing a set of simulated observations, namely NS radius and tidal deformability, we leverage BNNs as effective tools for inferring the proton fraction and sound speed within NS interiors. To achieve this, several BNNs models were developed upon a dataset of ∼ 25     K nuclear equation of state within a relativistic mean-field framework, obtained through Bayesian inference that adheres to minimal low-density constraints. Unlike conventional neural networks, BNNs possess an exceptional quality: they provide a prediction uncertainty measure. To simulate the inherent imperfections present in real-world observations, we have generated four distinct training and testing datasets that replicate specific observational uncertainties. Our initial results demonstrate that BNNs successfully recover the composition with reasonable levels of uncertainty. Furthermore, using mock data prepared with the DD2, a different class of relativistic mean-field model utilized during training, the BNN model effectively retrieves the proton fraction and speed of sound for neutron star matter.

DOI: https://doi.org/10.1103/PhysRevD.108.043031