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An origin for short gamma-ray bursts unassociated with current star formation

Barthelmy, S D; Chincarini, G; Burrows, D N; Gehrels, N; Covino, S; Moretti, A; Romano, P; O'Brien, P T; Sarazin, C L and Kouveliotou, C, et al. (2005) In Nature 438. p.994-996
Abstract
Two short (< 2 s) gamma-ray bursts (GRBs) have recently been localized(1-4) and fading afterglow counterparts detected(2-4). The combination of these two results left unclear the nature of the host galaxies of the bursts, because one was a star-forming dwarf, while the other was probably an elliptical galaxy. Here we report the X-ray localization of a short burst (GRB 050724) with unusual gamma-ray and X-ray properties. The X-ray afterglow lies off the centre of an elliptical galaxy at a redshift of z = 0.258 (ref. 5), coincident with the position determined by ground-based optical and radio observations(6-8). The low level of star formation typical for elliptical galaxies makes it unlikely that the burst originated in a supernova... (More)
Two short (< 2 s) gamma-ray bursts (GRBs) have recently been localized(1-4) and fading afterglow counterparts detected(2-4). The combination of these two results left unclear the nature of the host galaxies of the bursts, because one was a star-forming dwarf, while the other was probably an elliptical galaxy. Here we report the X-ray localization of a short burst (GRB 050724) with unusual gamma-ray and X-ray properties. The X-ray afterglow lies off the centre of an elliptical galaxy at a redshift of z = 0.258 (ref. 5), coincident with the position determined by ground-based optical and radio observations(6-8). The low level of star formation typical for elliptical galaxies makes it unlikely that the burst originated in a supernova explosion. A supernova origin was also ruled out for GRB 050709 ( refs 3, 31), even though that burst took place in a galaxy with current star formation. The isotropic energy for the short bursts is 2 - 3 orders of magnitude lower than that for the long bursts. Our results therefore suggest that an alternative source of bursts - the coalescence of binary systems of neutron stars or a neutron star-black hole pair - are the progenitors of short bursts. (Less)
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Nature
volume
438
pages
994 - 996
publisher
Nature Publishing Group
external identifiers
  • pmid:16355219
  • wos:000233934600061
  • scopus:30744479179
ISSN
0028-0836
DOI
10.1038/nature04392
language
English
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@article{3f0b6a8f-e125-4690-9683-6920bbe1e2bf,
  abstract     = {Two short (&lt; 2 s) gamma-ray bursts (GRBs) have recently been localized(1-4) and fading afterglow counterparts detected(2-4). The combination of these two results left unclear the nature of the host galaxies of the bursts, because one was a star-forming dwarf, while the other was probably an elliptical galaxy. Here we report the X-ray localization of a short burst (GRB 050724) with unusual gamma-ray and X-ray properties. The X-ray afterglow lies off the centre of an elliptical galaxy at a redshift of z = 0.258 (ref. 5), coincident with the position determined by ground-based optical and radio observations(6-8). The low level of star formation typical for elliptical galaxies makes it unlikely that the burst originated in a supernova explosion. A supernova origin was also ruled out for GRB 050709 ( refs 3, 31), even though that burst took place in a galaxy with current star formation. The isotropic energy for the short bursts is 2 - 3 orders of magnitude lower than that for the long bursts. Our results therefore suggest that an alternative source of bursts - the coalescence of binary systems of neutron stars or a neutron star-black hole pair - are the progenitors of short bursts.},
  author       = {Barthelmy, S D and Chincarini, G and Burrows, D N and Gehrels, N and Covino, S and Moretti, A and Romano, P and O'Brien, P T and Sarazin, C L and Kouveliotou, C and Goad, M and Vaughan, S and Tagliaferri, G and Zhang, B and Antonelli, L A and Campana, S and Cummings, J R and D'Avanzo, P and Davies, Melvyn B and Giommi, P and Grupe, D and Kaneko, Y and Kennea, J A and King, A and Kobayashi, S and Melandri, A and Meszaros, P and Nousek, J A and Patel, S and Sakamoto, T and Wijers, R A M J},
  issn         = {0028-0836},
  language     = {eng},
  pages        = {994--996},
  publisher    = {Nature Publishing Group},
  series       = {Nature},
  title        = {An origin for short gamma-ray bursts unassociated with current star formation},
  url          = {http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/nature04392},
  volume       = {438},
  year         = {2005},
}