Grb 091024a and the Nature of Ultra-Long Gamma-Ray Bursts

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Grb 091024a and the Nature of Ultra-Long Gamma-Ray Bursts

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Title: Grb 091024a and the Nature of Ultra-Long Gamma-Ray Bursts
Author: Virgili, F. J.; Mundell, C. G.; Pal, V.; Guidorzi, C.; Margutti, R.; Melandri, A.; Harrison, R.; Kobayashi, S.; Chornock, R.; Henden, A.; Updike, A. C.; Cenko, S. B.; Tanvir, N. R.; Steele, I. A.; Cucchiara, A.; Gomboc, A.; Levan, A.; Cano, Z.; Mottram, C. J.; Clay, N. R.; Bersier, D.; Kopač, D.; Japelj, J.; Filippenko, A. V.; Li, W.; Svinkin, D.; Golenetskii, S.; Hartmann, D. H.; Milne, P. A.; Williams, G.; O, P. T.; Fox, D. B.; Berger, Edo

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Citation: Virgili, F. J., C. G. Mundell, V. Pal’shin, C. Guidorzi, R. Margutti, A. Melandri, R. Harrison, et al. 2013. “Grb 091024a and the Nature of Ultra-Long Gamma-Ray Bursts.” The Astrophysical Journal 778 (1) (November 1): 54. doi:10.1088/0004-637x/778/1/54.
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Abstract: We present a broadband study of gamma-ray burst (GRB) 091024A within the context of other ultra-long-duration GRBs. An unusually long burst detected by Konus-Wind, Swift, and Fermi, GRB 091024A has prompt emission episodes covering ∼ 1300 s, accompanied by bright and highly structured optical emission captured by various rapid-response facilities, including the 2-m autonomous robotic Faulkes North and Liverpool Telescopes, KAIT, S-LOTIS, and SRO. We also observed the burst with 8- and 10-m class telescopes and determine the redshift to be z = 1.0924 ± 0.0004. We find no correlation between the optical and γ-ray peaks and interpret the optical light curve as being of external origin, caused by the reverse and forward shock of a highly magnetized jet (RB ≈ 100–200). Low-level emission is detected throughout the near-background quiescent period between the first two emission episodes of the Konus-Wind data, suggesting continued central-engine activity; we discuss the implications of this ongoing emission and its impact on the afterglow evolution and predictions. We summarize the varied sample of historical GRBs with exceptionally long durations in gamma-rays (& 1000 s) and discuss the likelihood of these events being from a separate population; we suggest ultra-long GRBs represent the tail of the duration distribution of the long GRB population.
Published Version: doi:10.1088/0004-637x/778/1/54
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