Shading and smothering of gamma-ray bursts Academic Article uri icon


  • The gamma ray burst (GRB) 980425 is distinctive in that it seems to be associated with supernova (SN) 1998bw, has no X-ray afterglow, and has a single peak light curve and a soft spectrum. The supernova is itself unusual in that its expansion velocity exceeds c/6. We suggest that many of these features can be accounted for with the hypothesis that we observe the GRB along a penumbral line of sight that contains mainly photons that have scattered off ejected baryons. The hypothesis suggests a baryon poor jet (BPJ) existing within a baryon rich outflow. The sharp distinction can be attributed to whether or not the magnetic field lines thread an event horizon. Such a configuration suggests that there will be some non-thermal acceleration of pick-up ex-neutrons within the BPJ. This scenario might produce observable spallation products and neutrinos. Comment: 7 pages, 2 figures, submitted to ApJL

publication date

  • January 1, 1999