PROMPT Observations of the Early-Time Optical Afterglow of GRB 060607A - AstrophysicsReport as inadecuate

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Abstract: PROMPT Panchromatic Robotic Optical Monitoring and Polarimetry Telescopesobserved the early-time optical afterglow of GRB 060607A and obtained a denselysampled multiwavelength light curve that begins only tens of seconds after theGRB. Located at Cerro Tololo Inter-American Observatory in Chile, PROMPT isdesigned to observe the afterglows of gamma-ray bursts using multiple automated0.4-m telescopes that image simultaneously in many filters when the afterglowis bright and may be highly variable. The data span the interval from 44seconds after the GRB trigger to 3.3 hours in the Bgri filters. We observe aninitial peak in the light curve at approximately three minutes, followed byrebrightenings peaking around 40 minutes and again at 66 minutes. Although ourdata overlap with the early Swift gamma-ray and x-ray light curves, we do notsee a correlation between the optical and high-energy flares. We do not findevidence for spectral evolution throughout the observations. We model thevariations in the light curves and find that the most likely cause of therebrightening episodes is a refreshment of the forward shock preceded by arapidly fading reverse shock component, although other explanations areplausible.

Author: M. Nysewander, D. E. Reichart, J. A. Crain, A. Foster, J. Haislip, K. Ivarsen, A. Lacluyze, A. Trotter


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