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|Title:||Anatomy of a dark burst - The afterglow of GRB 060108|
|Authors:||Oates, S. R.|
De Pasquale M.
Blustin, A. J.
Page, M. J.
Mundell, C. G.
Smith, R. J.
|Publisher:||Royal Astronomical Society (RAS)|
|Citation:||Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society, 2006, 372 (1), pp. 327-337|
|Abstract:||We present a multiwavelength study of GRB 060108 – the 100th gamma-ray burst discovered by Swift. The X-ray flux and light curve (three segments plus a flare) detected with the X-ray Telescope are typical of Swift long bursts. We report the discovery of a faint optical afterglow detected in deep BVRi′-band imaging obtained with the Faulkes Telescope North beginning 2.75 min after the burst. The afterglow is below the detection limit of the Ultraviolet/Optical Telescope within 100 s of the burst, while is evident in K-band images taken with the United Kingdom Infrared Telescope 45 min after the burst. The optical light curve is sparsely sampled. Observations taken in the R and i′ bands can be fitted either with a single power-law decay in flux, F(t) ∝t−α where α= 0.43 ± 0.08, or with a two-segment light curve with an initial steep decay α1 < 0.88 ± 0.2, flattening to a slope α2∼ 0.31 ± 0.12. A marginal evidence for rebrightening is seen in the i′ band. Deep R-band imaging obtained ∼12 d post-burst with the Very Large Telescope reveals a faint, extended object (R∼ 23.5 mag) at the location of the afterglow. Although the brightness is compatible with the extrapolation of the slow decay with index α2, significant flux is likely due to a host galaxy. This implies that the optical light curve had a break before 12 d, akin to what observed in the X-rays. We derive the maximum photometric redshift z < 3.2 for GRB 060108. We find that the spectral energy distribution at 1000 s after the burst, from the optical to the X-ray range, is best fitted by a simple power law, Fν∝ν−β, with βOX= 0.54 and a small amount of extinction. The optical to X-ray spectral index (βOX) confirms GRB 060108 to be one of the optically darkest bursts detected. Our observations rule out a high redshift as the reason for the optical faintness of GRB 060108. We conclude that a more likely explanation is a combination of an intrinsic optical faintness of the burst, a hard optical to X-ray spectrum and a moderate amount of extinction in the host galaxy.|
|Rights:||This article has been accepted for publication in Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society ©: 2006 the authors. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Royal Astronomical Society. All rights reserved. Deposited with reference to the publisher’s archiving policy available on the SHERPA/RoMEO website.|
|Appears in Collections:||Published Articles, Dept. of Physics and Astronomy|
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