Title

A Peculiarly Short-Duration Gamma-Ray Burst from Massive Star Core Collapse

Document Type

Article

Publication Date

7-26-2021

Publication Title

Nature Astronomy

Volume

5

First page number:

911

Last page number:

916

Abstract

Gamma-ray bursts (GRBs) have been phenomenologically classified into long and short populations based on the observed bimodal distribution of duration1. Multi-wavelength and multi-messenger observations in recent years have revealed that in general long GRBs originate from massive star core collapse events2, whereas short GRBs originate from binary neutron star mergers3. It has been known that the duration criterion is sometimes unreliable, and multi-wavelength criteria are needed to identify the physical origin of a particular GRB4. Some apparently long GRBs have been suggested to have a neutron star merger origin5, whereas some apparently short GRBs have been attributed to genuinely long GRBs6 whose short, bright emission is slightly above the detector’s sensitivity threshold. Here, we report the comprehensive analysis of the multi-wavelength data of the short, bright GRB 200826A. Characterized by a sharp pulse, this burst shows a duration of 1 second and no evidence of an underlying longer-duration event. Its other observational properties such as its spectral behaviours, total energy and host galaxy offset are, however, inconsistent with those of other short GRBs believed to originate from binary neutron star mergers. Rather, these properties resemble those of long GRBs. This burst confirms the existence of short-duration GRBs with stellar core-collapse origin4, and presents some challenges to the existing models.

Keywords

Gamma-ray bursts; Multi-wavelength observations; Star core collapse

Disciplines

Astrophysics and Astronomy | Other Astrophysics and Astronomy | Physical Sciences and Mathematics

Language

English

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