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Ready, Set, Launch: Time Interval between a Binary Neutron Star Merger and Short Gamma-Ray Burst Jet Formation

Beniamini, Paz and Duran, Rodolfo Barniol and Petropoulou, Maria and Giannios, Dimitrios (2020) Ready, Set, Launch: Time Interval between a Binary Neutron Star Merger and Short Gamma-Ray Burst Jet Formation. Astrophysical Journal Letters, 895 (2). Art. No. L33. ISSN 2041-8213. https://resolver.caltech.edu/CaltechAUTHORS:20200526-083531807

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Abstract

The joint detection of GW170817/GRB 170817 confirmed the long-standing theory that binary neutron star mergers produce short gamma-ray burst (sGRB) jets that can successfully break out of the surrounding ejecta. At the same time, the association with a kilonova provided unprecedented information regarding the physical properties (such as masses and velocities) of the different ejecta constituents. Combining this knowledge with the observed luminosities and durations of cosmological sGRBs detected by the Burst Alert Telescope onboard the Neil Gehrels Swift Observatory, we revisit the breakout conditions of sGRB jets. Assuming self-collimation of sGRB jets does not play a critical role, we find that the time interval between the binary merger and the launch of a typical sGRB jet is ≾0.1 s. We also show that for a fraction of at least ~30% of sGRBs, the usually adopted assumption of static ejecta is inconsistent with observations, even if the polar ejecta mass is an order of magnitude smaller than that in GRB 170817. Our results disfavor magnetar central engines for powering cosmological sGRBs, limit the amount of energy deposited in the cocoon prior to breakout, and suggest that the observed delay of ~1.7 s in GW170817/GRB 170817 between the gravitational wave and gamma-ray signals is likely dominated by the propagation time of the jet to the gamma-ray production site.


Item Type:Article
Related URLs:
URLURL TypeDescription
https://doi.org/10.3847/2041-8213/ab9223DOIArticle
https://arxiv.org/abs/2001.00950arXivDiscussion Paper
ORCID:
AuthorORCID
Beniamini, Paz0000-0001-7833-1043
Petropoulou, Maria0000-0001-6640-0179
Alternate Title:Ready, set, launch: time interval between BNS merger and short GRB jet formation
Additional Information:© 2020 The American Astronomical Society. Received 2020 March 20; revised 2020 May 1; accepted 2020 May 1; published 2020 May 29. The research of P.B. was funded by the Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation through Grant GBMF5076. R.B.D. and D.G. acknowledge support from the National Science Foundation under Grants 1816694 and 1816136. M.P. acknowledges support from the Lyman Jr. Spitzer Postdoctoral Fellowship and the Fermi Guest Investigator Program Cycle 12, grant 80NSSC18K1745. D.G. acknowledges support from the NASA grant NNX17AG21G and the Fermi Guest Investigator Program Cycle 12, grant 80NSSC19K1506.
Group:TAPIR
Funders:
Funding AgencyGrant Number
Gordon and Betty Moore FoundationGBMF5076
NSFAST-1816694
NSFAST-1816136
Princeton UniversityUNSPECIFIED
NASA80NSSC18K1745
NASANNX17AG21G
NASA80NSSC19K1506
Subject Keywords:Gamma-ray bursts ; Relativistic jets ; Neutron stars ; Gravitational wave sources ; Astrophysical black holes
Issue or Number:2
Classification Code:Unified Astronomy Thesaurus concepts: Gamma-ray bursts (629); Relativistic jets (1390); Neutron stars (1108); Gravitational wave sources (677); Astrophysical black holes (98)
Record Number:CaltechAUTHORS:20200526-083531807
Persistent URL:https://resolver.caltech.edu/CaltechAUTHORS:20200526-083531807
Official Citation:Paz Beniamini et al 2020 ApJL 895 L33
Usage Policy:No commercial reproduction, distribution, display or performance rights in this work are provided.
ID Code:103438
Collection:CaltechAUTHORS
Deposited By: Tony Diaz
Deposited On:26 May 2020 16:30
Last Modified:29 May 2020 17:51

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