Gamma-ray burst radio afterglows from Population III stars: Simulation methods and detection prospects with SKA precursors

D. Macpherson, David Coward

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

5 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

© 2015 The Authors. We investigate the prospects of detecting radio afterglows from long Gamma-Ray Bursts (GRBs) from Population III (Pop III) progenitors using the Square Kilometre Array (SKA) precursor instruments MWA (Murchison Widefield Array) and ASKAP (Australian SKA Pathfinder).We derive a realistic model of GRB afterglows that encompasses the widest range of plausible physical parameters and observation angles. We define the best case scenario of Pop III GRB energy and redshift distributions. Using probability distribution functions fitted to the observed microphysical parameters of long GRBs, we simulate a large number of Pop III GRB afterglows to find the global probability of detection. We find that ASKAP may be able to detect 35 per cent of Pop III GRB afterglows in the optimistic case, and 27 per cent in the pessimistic case. A negligible number will be detectable by MWA in either case. Detections per image for ASKAP, found by incorporating intrinsic rates with detectable time-scales, are as high as ~6000 and as low as ~11, which shows the optimistic case is unrealistic. We track how the afterglow flux density changes over various time intervals and find that, because of their very slow variability, the cadence for blind searches of these afterglows should be as long as possible. We also find Pop III GRBs at high redshift have radio afterglow light curves that are indistinguishable from those of regular long GRBs in the more local Universe.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2144-2154
Number of pages11
JournalMonthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society
Volume453
Issue number2
Early online date28 Aug 2015
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 21 Oct 2015

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