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Title: The Electromagnetic Counterpart of the Binary Neutron Star Merger LIGO/Virgo GW170817. V. Rising X-Ray Emission from an Off-axis Jet

Abstract

Here, we report the discovery of rising X-ray emission from the binary neutron star merger event GW170817. This is the first detection of X-ray emission from a gravitational-wave (GW) source. Observations acquired with the Chandra X-ray Observatory (CXO) at $$t\approx 2.3$$ days post-merger reveal no significant emission, with $${L}_{x}\lesssim 3.2\times {10}^{38}\,\mathrm{erg}\,{{\rm{s}}}^{-1}$$ (isotropic-equivalent). Continued monitoring revealed the presence of an X-ray source that brightened with time, reaching $${L}_{x}\approx 9\times {10}^{38}\,\mathrm{erg}\,{{\rm{s}}}^{-1}$$ at $$\approx 15.1$$ days post-merger. We interpret these findings in the context of isotropic and collimated relativistic outflows (both on- and off-axis). We find that the broadband X-ray to radio observations are consistent with emission from a relativistic jet with kinetic energy $${E}_{k}\sim {10}^{49-50}\,\mathrm{erg}$$, viewed off-axis with $${\theta }_{\mathrm{obs}}\sim 20^\circ \mbox{--}40^\circ $$. Our models favor a circumbinary density $$n\sim {10}^{-4}\mbox{--}{10}^{-2}\,{\mathrm{cm}}^{-3}$$, depending on the value of the microphysical parameter $${\epsilon }_{B}={10}^{-4}\mbox{--}{10}^{-2}$$. A central-engine origin of the X-ray emission is unlikely. Future X-ray observations at $$t\gtrsim 100$$ days, when the target will be observable again with the CXO, will provide additional constraints to solve the model degeneracies and test our predictions. Our inferences on $${\theta }_{\mathrm{obs}}$$ are testable with GW information on GW170817 from advanced LIGO/Virgo on the binary inclination.

Authors:
ORCiD logo [1];  [2];  [1];  [3];  [2];  [4];  [2];  [2];  [5];  [2];  [2];  [2];  [2];  [6];  [7];  [8];  [8];  [9];  [8];  [10] more »;  [11] « less
  1. Northwestern Univ., Evanston, IL (United States)
  2. Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics, Cambridge, MA (United States)
  3. Univ. of Ferrara, Ferrara (Italy)
  4. Columbia Univ., New York, NY (United States)
  5. Ohio Univ., Athens, OH (United States)
  6. Fermi National Accelerator Lab. (FNAL), Batavia, IL (United States)
  7. Syracuse Univ., Syracuse, NY (United States)
  8. Univ. of Chicago, Chicago, IL (United States)
  9. Fermi National Accelerator Lab. (FNAL), Batavia, IL (United States); Univ. of Chicago, Chicago, IL (United States)
  10. Univ. of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, PA (United States)
  11. Fermi National Accelerator Lab. (FNAL), Batavia, IL (United States); Brandeis Univ., Waltham, MA (United States)
Publication Date:
Research Org.:
Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory (FNAL), Batavia, IL (United States)
Sponsoring Org.:
USDOE Office of Science (SC), High Energy Physics (HEP)
OSTI Identifier:
1408215
Report Number(s):
arXiv:1710.05431; FERMILAB-PUB-17-499-A-AE-CD
Journal ID: ISSN 2041-8213; 1630774; TRN: US1702935
Grant/Contract Number:  
AC02-07CH11359
Resource Type:
Accepted Manuscript
Journal Name:
The Astrophysical Journal. Letters (Online)
Additional Journal Information:
Journal Name: The Astrophysical Journal. Letters (Online); Journal Volume: 848; Journal Issue: 2; Journal ID: ISSN 2041-8213
Publisher:
Institute of Physics (IOP)
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
79 ASTRONOMY AND ASTROPHYSICS; stars: neutron; gravitational waves; relativistic processes

Citation Formats

Margutti, Raffaella, Berger, E., Fong, W., Guidorzi, C., Alexander, K. D., Metzger, B. D., Blanchard, P. K., Cowperthwaite, P. S., Chornock, R., Eftekhari, T., Nicholl, M., Villar, V. A., Williams, P. K. G., Annis, J., Brown, D. A., Chen, H., Doctor, Z., Frieman, J. A., Holz, D. E., Sako, M., and Soares-Santos, M. The Electromagnetic Counterpart of the Binary Neutron Star Merger LIGO/Virgo GW170817. V. Rising X-Ray Emission from an Off-axis Jet. United States: N. p., 2017. Web. doi:10.3847/2041-8213/aa9057.
Margutti, Raffaella, Berger, E., Fong, W., Guidorzi, C., Alexander, K. D., Metzger, B. D., Blanchard, P. K., Cowperthwaite, P. S., Chornock, R., Eftekhari, T., Nicholl, M., Villar, V. A., Williams, P. K. G., Annis, J., Brown, D. A., Chen, H., Doctor, Z., Frieman, J. A., Holz, D. E., Sako, M., & Soares-Santos, M. The Electromagnetic Counterpart of the Binary Neutron Star Merger LIGO/Virgo GW170817. V. Rising X-Ray Emission from an Off-axis Jet. United States. https://doi.org/10.3847/2041-8213/aa9057
Margutti, Raffaella, Berger, E., Fong, W., Guidorzi, C., Alexander, K. D., Metzger, B. D., Blanchard, P. K., Cowperthwaite, P. S., Chornock, R., Eftekhari, T., Nicholl, M., Villar, V. A., Williams, P. K. G., Annis, J., Brown, D. A., Chen, H., Doctor, Z., Frieman, J. A., Holz, D. E., Sako, M., and Soares-Santos, M. Mon . "The Electromagnetic Counterpart of the Binary Neutron Star Merger LIGO/Virgo GW170817. V. Rising X-Ray Emission from an Off-axis Jet". United States. https://doi.org/10.3847/2041-8213/aa9057. https://www.osti.gov/servlets/purl/1408215.
@article{osti_1408215,
title = {The Electromagnetic Counterpart of the Binary Neutron Star Merger LIGO/Virgo GW170817. V. Rising X-Ray Emission from an Off-axis Jet},
author = {Margutti, Raffaella and Berger, E. and Fong, W. and Guidorzi, C. and Alexander, K. D. and Metzger, B. D. and Blanchard, P. K. and Cowperthwaite, P. S. and Chornock, R. and Eftekhari, T. and Nicholl, M. and Villar, V. A. and Williams, P. K. G. and Annis, J. and Brown, D. A. and Chen, H. and Doctor, Z. and Frieman, J. A. and Holz, D. E. and Sako, M. and Soares-Santos, M.},
abstractNote = {Here, we report the discovery of rising X-ray emission from the binary neutron star merger event GW170817. This is the first detection of X-ray emission from a gravitational-wave (GW) source. Observations acquired with the Chandra X-ray Observatory (CXO) at $t\approx 2.3$ days post-merger reveal no significant emission, with ${L}_{x}\lesssim 3.2\times {10}^{38}\,\mathrm{erg}\,{{\rm{s}}}^{-1}$ (isotropic-equivalent). Continued monitoring revealed the presence of an X-ray source that brightened with time, reaching ${L}_{x}\approx 9\times {10}^{38}\,\mathrm{erg}\,{{\rm{s}}}^{-1}$ at $\approx 15.1$ days post-merger. We interpret these findings in the context of isotropic and collimated relativistic outflows (both on- and off-axis). We find that the broadband X-ray to radio observations are consistent with emission from a relativistic jet with kinetic energy ${E}_{k}\sim {10}^{49-50}\,\mathrm{erg}$, viewed off-axis with ${\theta }_{\mathrm{obs}}\sim 20^\circ \mbox{--}40^\circ $. Our models favor a circumbinary density $n\sim {10}^{-4}\mbox{--}{10}^{-2}\,{\mathrm{cm}}^{-3}$, depending on the value of the microphysical parameter ${\epsilon }_{B}={10}^{-4}\mbox{--}{10}^{-2}$. A central-engine origin of the X-ray emission is unlikely. Future X-ray observations at $t\gtrsim 100$ days, when the target will be observable again with the CXO, will provide additional constraints to solve the model degeneracies and test our predictions. Our inferences on ${\theta }_{\mathrm{obs}}$ are testable with GW information on GW170817 from advanced LIGO/Virgo on the binary inclination.},
doi = {10.3847/2041-8213/aa9057},
journal = {The Astrophysical Journal. Letters (Online)},
number = 2,
volume = 848,
place = {United States},
year = {2017},
month = {10}
}

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Brightening X-Ray/Optical/Radio Emission of GW170817/SGRB 170817A: Evidence for an Electron–Positron Wind from the Central Engine?
journal, March 2018

  • Geng, Jin-Jun; Dai, Zi-Gao; Huang, Yong-Feng
  • The Astrophysical Journal, Vol. 856, Issue 2
  • DOI: 10.3847/2041-8213/aab7f9

A Turnover in the Radio Light Curve of GW170817
journal, May 2018

  • Dobie, Dougal; Kaplan, David L.; Murphy, Tara
  • The Astrophysical Journal, Vol. 858, Issue 2
  • DOI: 10.3847/2041-8213/aac105

Continued Brightening of the Afterglow of GW170817/GRB 170817A as Being Due to a Delayed Energy Injection
journal, May 2018


An Upper Limit on the Linear Polarization Fraction of the GW170817 Radio Continuum
journal, July 2018

  • Corsi, Alessandra; Hallinan, Gregg W.; Lazzati, Davide
  • The Astrophysical Journal, Vol. 861, Issue 1
  • DOI: 10.3847/2041-8213/aacdfd

Fading of the X-Ray Afterglow of Neutron Star Merger GW170817/GRB 170817A at 260 Days
journal, July 2018

  • Nynka, Melania; Ruan, John J.; Haggard, Daryl
  • The Astrophysical Journal, Vol. 862, Issue 2
  • DOI: 10.3847/2041-8213/aad32d

A Decline in the X-Ray through Radio Emission from GW170817 Continues to Support an Off-axis Structured Jet
journal, August 2018

  • Alexander, K. D.; Margutti, R.; Blanchard, P. K.
  • The Astrophysical Journal, Vol. 863, Issue 2
  • DOI: 10.3847/2041-8213/aad637

Fermi GBM Observations of GRB 150101B: A Second Nearby Event with a Short Hard Spike and a Soft Tail
journal, August 2018


Radio Sky Maps of the GRB 170817A Afterglow from Simulations
journal, September 2018

  • Zrake, Jonathan; Xie, Xiaoyi; MacFadyen, Andrew
  • The Astrophysical Journal, Vol. 865, Issue 1
  • DOI: 10.3847/2041-8213/aaddf8

Follow-up of the Neutron Star Bearing Gravitational-wave Candidate Events S190425z and S190426c with MMT and SOAR
journal, July 2019

  • Hosseinzadeh, G.; Cowperthwaite, P. S.; Gomez, S.
  • The Astrophysical Journal, Vol. 880, Issue 1
  • DOI: 10.3847/2041-8213/ab271c

GW170817 Afterglow Reveals that Short Gamma-Ray Bursts are Neutron Star Mergers
journal, July 2019


GROWTH on S190426c: Real-time Search for a Counterpart to the Probable Neutron Star–Black Hole Merger using an Automated Difference Imaging Pipeline for DECam
journal, August 2019

  • Goldstein, Daniel A.; Andreoni, Igor; Nugent, Peter E.
  • The Astrophysical Journal, Vol. 881, Issue 1
  • DOI: 10.3847/2041-8213/ab3046

Binary Black Hole Population Properties Inferred from the First and Second Observing Runs of Advanced LIGO and Advanced Virgo
journal, September 2019


A mildly relativistic wide-angle outflow in the neutron-star merger event GW170817
journal, December 2017

  • Mooley, K. P.; Nakar, E.; Hotokezaka, K.
  • Nature, Vol. 554, Issue 7691
  • DOI: 10.1038/nature25452

Superluminal motion of a relativistic jet in the neutron-star merger GW170817
journal, September 2018


The first direct double neutron star merger detection: Implications for cosmic nucleosynthesis
journal, July 2018


Retainment of r-process material in dwarf galaxies
journal, April 2018

  • Beniamini, Paz; Dvorkin, Irina; Silk, Joe
  • Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society, Vol. 478, Issue 2
  • DOI: 10.1093/mnras/sty1035

The progenitors of compact-object binaries: impact of metallicity, common envelope and natal kicks
journal, July 2018

  • Giacobbo, Nicola; Mapelli, Michela
  • Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society, Vol. 480, Issue 2
  • DOI: 10.1093/mnras/sty1999

Rapidly evolving transients in the Dark Energy Survey
journal, August 2018

  • Pursiainen, M.; Childress, M.; Smith, M.
  • Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society, Vol. 481, Issue 1
  • DOI: 10.1093/mnras/sty2309

The host galaxies of double compact objects merging in the local Universe
journal, October 2018

  • Mapelli, Michela; Giacobbo, Nicola; Toffano, Mattia
  • Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society, Vol. 481, Issue 4
  • DOI: 10.1093/mnras/sty2663

Host galaxies of merging compact objects: mass, star formation rate, metallicity, and colours
journal, May 2019

  • Artale, M. Celeste; Mapelli, Michela; Giacobbo, Nicola
  • Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society, Vol. 487, Issue 2
  • DOI: 10.1093/mnras/stz1382

First 100 ms of a long-lived magnetized neutron star formed in a binary neutron star merger
journal, July 2019


Multimessenger parameter estimation of GW170817
journal, April 2019


Prospects for observing and localizing gravitational-wave transients with Advanced LIGO, Advanced Virgo and KAGRA
text, January 2020

  • Abbott, B. P.; Abbott, R.; Abbott, T. D.
  • Apollo - University of Cambridge Repository
  • DOI: 10.17863/cam.57867

Joint gravitational wave - gamma-ray burst detection rates in the aftermath of GW170817
conference, January 2020

  • Howell, Eric; Ackley, Kendall; Rowlinson, Antonia
  • Proceedings of The New Era of Multi-Messenger Astrophysics — PoS(Asterics2019)
  • DOI: 10.22323/1.357.0035

Is the Macronova in GW170817 Powered by the Central Engine?
journal, July 2018

  • Matsumoto, Tatsuya; Ioka, Kunihito; Kisaka, Shota
  • The Astrophysical Journal, Vol. 861, Issue 1
  • DOI: 10.3847/1538-4357/aac4a8

Search for GeV Gamma-Ray Counterparts of Gravitational Wave Events by CALET
journal, August 2018


Low-frequency View of GW170817/GRB 170817A with the Giant Metrewave Radio Telescope
journal, October 2018

  • Resmi, L.; Schulze, S.; Ishwara-Chandra, C. H.
  • The Astrophysical Journal, Vol. 867, Issue 1
  • DOI: 10.3847/1538-4357/aae1a6

Binary Neutron Star Mergers: Mass Ejection, Electromagnetic Counterparts, and Nucleosynthesis
journal, December 2018

  • Radice, David; Perego, Albino; Hotokezaka, Kenta
  • The Astrophysical Journal, Vol. 869, Issue 2
  • DOI: 10.3847/1538-4357/aaf054

Radioactive Gamma-Ray Emissions from Neutron Star Mergers
journal, February 2019


LSST Target-of-opportunity Observations of Gravitational-wave Events: Essential and Efficient
journal, March 2019

  • Cowperthwaite, P. S.; Villar, V. A.; Scolnic, D. M.
  • The Astrophysical Journal, Vol. 874, Issue 1
  • DOI: 10.3847/1538-4357/ab07b6

The Orbit of GW170817 Was Inclined by Less Than 28° to the Line of Sight
journal, January 2018


Spitzer Space Telescope Infrared Observations of the Binary Neutron Star Merger GW170817
journal, July 2018

  • Villar, V. A.; Cowperthwaite, P. S.; Berger, E.
  • The Astrophysical Journal, Vol. 862, Issue 1
  • DOI: 10.3847/2041-8213/aad281

A Strong Jet Signature in the Late-time Light Curve of GW170817
journal, November 2018


The Optical Afterglow of GW170817 at One Year Post-merger
journal, January 2019


Unveiling the engines of fast radio bursts, superluminous supernovae, and gamma-ray bursts
journal, September 2018

  • Margalit, Ben; Metzger, Brian D.; Berger, Edo
  • Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society, Vol. 481, Issue 2
  • DOI: 10.1093/mnras/sty2417

Expected neutrino fluence from short Gamma-Ray Burst 170817A and off-axis angle constraints
journal, February 2018

  • Biehl, D.; Heinze, J.; Winter, W.
  • Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society, Vol. 476, Issue 1
  • DOI: 10.1093/mnras/sty285

A multidimensional implementation of the Advanced Spectral neutrino Leakage scheme
journal, October 2019

  • Gizzi, D.; O’Connor, E.; Rosswog, S.
  • Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society, Vol. 490, Issue 3
  • DOI: 10.1093/mnras/stz2911

Joint gravitational wave – gamma-ray burst detection rates in the aftermath of GW170817
journal, February 2019

  • Howell, E. J.; Ackley, K.; Rowlinson, A.
  • Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society, Vol. 485, Issue 1
  • DOI: 10.1093/mnras/stz455

Magnetically Inspired Explosive Outflows from Neutron-star Mergers
journal, January 2019

  • Nathanail, Antonios; Porth, Oliver; Rezzolla, Luciano
  • The Astrophysical Journal, Vol. 870, Issue 2
  • DOI: 10.3847/2041-8213/aaf73a

Constraints on the emitting region of the gamma-rays observed in GW170817
journal, November 2018

  • Matsumoto, Tatsuya; Nakar, Ehud; Piran, Tsvi
  • Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society, Vol. 483, Issue 1
  • DOI: 10.1093/mnras/sty3200

Prospects for observing and localizing gravitational-wave transients with Advanced LIGO, Advanced Virgo and KAGRA
other, January 2020

  • Abbott, B. P.; Abbott, R.; Abbott, T. D.
  • Heidelberg : Springer
  • DOI: 10.15488/10565

Light Curves of a Shock-breakout Material and a Relativistic Off-axis Jet from a Binary Neutron Star System
journal, January 2019

  • Fraija, N.; Pedreira, A. C. Caligula do E. S.; Veres, P.
  • The Astrophysical Journal, Vol. 871, Issue 2
  • DOI: 10.3847/1538-4357/aaf80e

GW170817 Most Likely Made a Black Hole
journal, May 2018

  • Pooley, David; Kumar, Pawan; Wheeler, J. Craig
  • The Astrophysical Journal, Vol. 859, Issue 2
  • DOI: 10.3847/2041-8213/aac3d6

The X-ray counterpart to the gravitational wave event GW 170817
text, January 2017


Swift and NuSTAR observations of GW170817: detection of a blue kilonova
text, January 2017


A long-lived remnant neutron star after GW170817 inferred from its associated kilonova
text, January 2017


Brightening X-ray Emission from GW170817/GRB170817A: Further Evidence for an Outflow
text, January 2017


GW170817 Most Likely Made a Black Hole
text, January 2017


Coincident detection significance in multimessenger astronomy
text, January 2017


The optical afterglow of the short gamma-ray burst associated with GW170817
preprint, January 2018


A magnetar origin for the kilonova ejecta in GW170817
text, January 2018


Light curves of a shock-breakout material and a relativistic off-axis jet from a Binary Neutron Star system
preprint, January 2018


A turnover in the radio light curve of GW170817
text, January 2018


Short gamma-ray burst central engines
text, January 2018


Fading of the X-ray Afterglow of Neutron Star Merger GW170817/GRB170817A at 260 days
text, January 2018


Spitzer Space Telescope Infrared Observations of the Binary Neutron Star Merger GW170817
text, January 2018


Unveiling the Engines of Fast Radio Bursts, Super-Luminous Supernovae, and Gamma-Ray Bursts
text, January 2018


Superluminal motion of a relativistic jet in the neutron star merger GW170817
text, January 2018


Binary Neutron Star Mergers: Mass Ejection, Electromagnetic Counterparts and Nucleosynthesis
text, January 2018


Pre-merger electromagnetic counterparts of binary compact stars
text, January 2018


Multimessenger Parameter Estimation of GW170817
text, January 2018


Magnetically inspired explosive outflows from neutron-star mergers
text, January 2018


Late-Time Afterglow from Double-Sided Structured Jets: Application to GRB 170817A
text, January 2019


A search for gamma-ray prompt emission associated with the Lorimer Burst FRB010724
text, January 2019


Prospects for observing and localizing gravitational-wave transients with Advanced LIGO, Advanced Virgo and KAGRA
text, January 2020

  • Abbott, B. P.; Abbott, R.; Abbott, T. D.
  • Apollo - University of Cambridge Repository
  • DOI: 10.17863/cam.57867

Short Duration Gamma-Ray Bursts and Their Outflows in Light of GW170817
journal, November 2020


Search for very-high-energy photons from Gamma-ray bursts with HAWC
preprint, January 2019