Constraints on Short Gamma-Ray Burst Models with Optical Limits of GRB 050509b

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We have obtained deep optical images with the Very Large Telescope at ESO of the first well-localized short-duration gamma-ray burst, GRB 050509b. We observed in the V and R bands at epochs starting at {approx}2 days after the GRB trigger and lasting up to three weeks. We detect no variable objects inside the small Swift/XRT X-ray error circle down to 5{sigma} limiting magnitudes of V = 26.5 and R = 25.2. The X-ray error circle includes a giant elliptical galaxy at z = 0.225, which has been proposed as the likely host of this GRB. Our limits indicate that if ... continued below

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13 pages

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Hjorth, Jens; Sollerman, J.; Gorosabel, J.; Granot, J.; Klose, S.; Kouveliotou, C. et al. June 15, 2005.

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We have obtained deep optical images with the Very Large Telescope at ESO of the first well-localized short-duration gamma-ray burst, GRB 050509b. We observed in the V and R bands at epochs starting at {approx}2 days after the GRB trigger and lasting up to three weeks. We detect no variable objects inside the small Swift/XRT X-ray error circle down to 5{sigma} limiting magnitudes of V = 26.5 and R = 25.2. The X-ray error circle includes a giant elliptical galaxy at z = 0.225, which has been proposed as the likely host of this GRB. Our limits indicate that if the GRB originated at z = 0.225, any supernova-like event accompanying the GRB would have to be over 100 times fainter than normal Type Ia SNe or Type Ic hypernovae, 5 times fainter than the faintest known Ia or Ic SNe, and fainter than the faintest known Type II SNe. Moreover, we use the optical limits to constrain the energetics of the GRB outflow, and conclude that there was very little radioactive material produced during the GRB explosion. These limits strongly constrain progenitor models for this short GRB.

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13 pages

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  • Journal Name: Astrophys.J.630:L117-L120,2005

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  • Report No.: SLAC-PUB-11267
  • Grant Number: AC02-76SF00515
  • Office of Scientific & Technical Information Report Number: 890448
  • Archival Resource Key: ark:/67531/metadc883954

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  • June 15, 2005

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  • Sept. 21, 2016, 2:29 a.m.

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  • July 26, 2017, 10:12 a.m.

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Hjorth, Jens; Sollerman, J.; Gorosabel, J.; Granot, J.; Klose, S.; Kouveliotou, C. et al. Constraints on Short Gamma-Ray Burst Models with Optical Limits of GRB 050509b, article, June 15, 2005; [Menlo Park, California]. (digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc883954/: accessed October 23, 2018), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; crediting UNT Libraries Government Documents Department.