Optical emission from GRB 050709: a short/hard GRB in a star-forming galaxy: A short/hard GRB in a star-forming galaxy

S Covino, D Malesani, GL Israel, P D'Avanzo, LA Antonelli, G Chincarini, D Fugazza, ML Conciatore, M Della Valle, F Fiore, D Guetta, K Hurley, D Lazzati, L Stella, G Tagliaferri, M Vietri, S Campana, DN Burrows, V D'Elia, P FilliatreN Gehrels, P Goldoni, A Melandri, S Mereghetti, IF Mirabel, A Moretti, J Nousek, PT O'Brien, LJ Pellizza, R Perna, S Piranomonte, P Romano, FM Zerbi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

79 Scopus citations

Abstract

We present optical observations of the short/hard gamma-ray burst GRB 050709, the first such event with an identified optical counterpart. The object is coincident with a weak X-ray source and is located inside a galaxy at redshift z = 0.1606 ± 0.0002. Multiband photometry allowed us to study the broad-band spectral energy distribution. Late-time monitoring places strong limits on any supernova simultaneous with the GRB. The host galaxy is not of early type. Spectra show that the dominant stellar population is relatively young (∼1 Gyr), and that ongoing star formation is present at a level of 2-3 L/L* M⊙ yr-1. This is at least 2 orders of magnitude larger than that observed in the elliptical hosts of the short GRB 050509B and GRB 050724. This shows that at least some short GRBs originate in a young population. Short/hard GRB models based on the merger of a binary degenerate system are compatible with the host galaxy characteristics, although there is still the possibility of a connection between young stars and at least a fraction of such events.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)L5-L8
JournalAstronomy and Astrophysics
Volume447
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - Feb 2006

Keywords

  • radiation mechanisms : non-thermal
  • gamma rays : bursts
  • gamma rays : individual GRB 050709

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