Bursts Before Burst: A Comparative Study on FRB 200428-Associated and FRB-Absent X-Ray Bursts From SGR J1935+2154

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Astrophysical Journal Letters





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© 2021. The American Astronomical Society. Accompanied by an X-ray burst, the fast radio burst (FRB) FRB 200428 was recently confirmed as originating from the Galactic magnetar soft gamma repeater (SGR) SGR J1935+2154. Just before and after FRB 200428 was detected, the Five-hundred-meter Aperture Spherical radio Telescope (FAST) had been monitoring SGR J1935 +2154 for eight hours. From UTC 2020 April 27 23:55:00 to 2020 April 28 00:50:37, FAST detected no pulsed radio emission from SGR J1935+2154, while Fermi/Gamma-ray Burst Monitor registered 34 bursts in the X/soft γ-ray band, forming a unique sample of X-ray bursts in the absence of FRBs. After a comprehensive analysis on light curves, time-integrated, and time-resolved spectral properties of these FRB-absent X-ray bursts, we compare this sample with the FRB-associated X-ray burst detected by Insight-HXMT, INTEGRAL, and Konus-Wind. The FRB-associated burst distinguishes itself from other X-ray bursts by its nonthermal spectrum and a higher spectral peak energy, but otherwise is not atypical. We also compare the cumulative energy distribution of our X-ray burst sample with that of first repeating FRB source, FRB 121102, with the calibration of FRB 200428-X-ray burst association. We find a similarity between the two, offering indirect support of the magnetar origin of cosmological FRBs. The event rate density of magnetar bursts is about ∼150 times higher than the FRB event rate density at the energy of FRB 200428. This again suggests that, if all FRBs originate from magnetars, only a small fraction of X-ray bursts are associated with FRBs.


Cosmology, Relativity, and Gravity



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