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Title: The Electromagnetic Counterpart of the Binary Neutron Star Merger LIGO/Virgo GW170817. VI. Radio Constraints on a Relativistic Jet and Predictions for Late-time Emission from the Kilonova Ejecta

Abstract

Here, we present Very Large Array (VLA) and Atacama Large Millimeter/sub-millimeter Array ALMA radio observations of GW\,170817, the first Laser Interferometer Gravitational-wave Observatory (LIGO)/Virgo gravitational wave (GW) event from a binary neutron star merger and the first GW event with an electromagnetic (EM) counterpart. Our data include the first observations following the discovery of the optical transient at both the centimeter ($13.7$ hours post merger) and millimeter ($2.41$ days post merger) bands. We detect faint emission at 6 GHz at 19.47 and 39.23 days after the merger, but not in an earlier observation at 2.46 d. We do not detect cm/mm emission at the position of the optical counterpart at frequencies of 10-97.5 GHz at times ranging from 0.6 to 30 days post merger, ruling out an on-axis short gamma-ray burst (SGRB) for energies $$\gtrsim 10^{48}$$ erg. For fiducial SGRB parameters, our limits require an observer viewer angle of $$\gtrsim 20^{\circ}$$. The radio and X-ray data can be jointly explained as the afterglow emission from an SGRB with a jet energy of $$\sim 10^{49}-10^{50}$$ erg that exploded in a uniform density environment with $$n\sim 10^{-4}-10^{-2}$$ cm$$^{-3}$$, viewed at an angle of $$\sim 20^{\circ}-40^{\circ}$$ from the jet axis. Using the results of our light curve and spectral modeling, in conjunction with the inference of the circumbinary density, we predict the emergence of late-time radio emission from the deceleration of the kilonova (KN) ejecta on a timescale of $$\sim 5-10$$ years that will remain detectable for decades with next-generation radio facilities, making GW\,170817 a compelling target for long-term radio monitoring.

Authors:
ORCiD logo [1]; ORCiD logo [1]; ORCiD logo [2]; ORCiD logo [1];  [3]; ORCiD logo [2];  [4];  [5];  [1];  [6];  [7];  [8];  [9];  [1];  [10];  [1];  [11];  [12];  [1];  [13] more »;  [6];  [5];  [1] « less
  1. Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics, Cambridge, MA (United States)
  2. Northwestern Univ., Evanston, IL (United States)
  3. Univ. of Ferrara, Ferrara (Italy)
  4. Columbia Univ., New York, NY (United States)
  5. Fermi National Accelerator Lab. (FNAL), Batavia, IL (United States)
  6. Univ. of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, PA (United States)
  7. Syracuse Univ., Syracuse, NY (United States)
  8. Univ. of Chicago, Chicago, IL (United States)
  9. Ohio Univ., Athens, OH (United States)
  10. Carnegie Observatories, Pasadena, CA (United States)
  11. Fermi National Accelerator Lab. (FNAL), Batavia, IL (United States); Univ. of Chicago, Chicago, IL (United States)
  12. Univ. of Chicago, Chicago, IL (United States); Enrico Fermi Institute, Chicago, IL (United States)
  13. Space Telescope Science Institute, Baltimore, MD (United States); The Johns Hopkins Univ., Baltimore, MD (United States)
Publication Date:
Research Org.:
Fermi National Accelerator Lab. (FNAL), Batavia, IL (United States)
Sponsoring Org.:
USDOE Office of Science (SC), High Energy Physics (HEP)
OSTI Identifier:
1409350
Report Number(s):
arXiv:1710.05457; FERMILAB-PUB-17-474-A-AE-CD
Journal ID: ISSN 2041-8213; 1630797
Grant/Contract Number:  
AC02-07CH11359
Resource Type:
Accepted Manuscript
Journal Name:
The Astrophysical Journal. Letters
Additional Journal Information:
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; gravitational waves; relativistic processes

Citation Formats

Alexander, K. D., Berger, E., Fong, W., Williams, P. K. G., Guidorzi, C., Margutti, R., Metzger, B. D., Annis, J., Blanchard, P. K., Brout, D., Brown, D. A., Chen, H. -Y., Chornock, R., Cowperthwaite, P. S., Drout, M., Eftekhari, T., Frieman, J., Holz, D. E., Nicholl, M., Rest, A., Sako, M., Soares-Santos, M., and Villar, V. A.. The Electromagnetic Counterpart of the Binary Neutron Star Merger LIGO/Virgo GW170817. VI. Radio Constraints on a Relativistic Jet and Predictions for Late-time Emission from the Kilonova Ejecta. United States: N. p., 2017. Web. https://doi.org/10.3847/2041-8213/aa905d.
Alexander, K. D., Berger, E., Fong, W., Williams, P. K. G., Guidorzi, C., Margutti, R., Metzger, B. D., Annis, J., Blanchard, P. K., Brout, D., Brown, D. A., Chen, H. -Y., Chornock, R., Cowperthwaite, P. S., Drout, M., Eftekhari, T., Frieman, J., Holz, D. E., Nicholl, M., Rest, A., Sako, M., Soares-Santos, M., & Villar, V. A.. The Electromagnetic Counterpart of the Binary Neutron Star Merger LIGO/Virgo GW170817. VI. Radio Constraints on a Relativistic Jet and Predictions for Late-time Emission from the Kilonova Ejecta. United States. https://doi.org/10.3847/2041-8213/aa905d
Alexander, K. D., Berger, E., Fong, W., Williams, P. K. G., Guidorzi, C., Margutti, R., Metzger, B. D., Annis, J., Blanchard, P. K., Brout, D., Brown, D. A., Chen, H. -Y., Chornock, R., Cowperthwaite, P. S., Drout, M., Eftekhari, T., Frieman, J., Holz, D. E., Nicholl, M., Rest, A., Sako, M., Soares-Santos, M., and Villar, V. A.. Mon . "The Electromagnetic Counterpart of the Binary Neutron Star Merger LIGO/Virgo GW170817. VI. Radio Constraints on a Relativistic Jet and Predictions for Late-time Emission from the Kilonova Ejecta". United States. https://doi.org/10.3847/2041-8213/aa905d. https://www.osti.gov/servlets/purl/1409350.
@article{osti_1409350,
title = {The Electromagnetic Counterpart of the Binary Neutron Star Merger LIGO/Virgo GW170817. VI. Radio Constraints on a Relativistic Jet and Predictions for Late-time Emission from the Kilonova Ejecta},
author = {Alexander, K. D. and Berger, E. and Fong, W. and Williams, P. K. G. and Guidorzi, C. and Margutti, R. and Metzger, B. D. and Annis, J. and Blanchard, P. K. and Brout, D. and Brown, D. A. and Chen, H. -Y. and Chornock, R. and Cowperthwaite, P. S. and Drout, M. and Eftekhari, T. and Frieman, J. and Holz, D. E. and Nicholl, M. and Rest, A. and Sako, M. and Soares-Santos, M. and Villar, V. A.},
abstractNote = {Here, we present Very Large Array (VLA) and Atacama Large Millimeter/sub-millimeter Array ALMA radio observations of GW\,170817, the first Laser Interferometer Gravitational-wave Observatory (LIGO)/Virgo gravitational wave (GW) event from a binary neutron star merger and the first GW event with an electromagnetic (EM) counterpart. Our data include the first observations following the discovery of the optical transient at both the centimeter ($13.7$ hours post merger) and millimeter ($2.41$ days post merger) bands. We detect faint emission at 6 GHz at 19.47 and 39.23 days after the merger, but not in an earlier observation at 2.46 d. We do not detect cm/mm emission at the position of the optical counterpart at frequencies of 10-97.5 GHz at times ranging from 0.6 to 30 days post merger, ruling out an on-axis short gamma-ray burst (SGRB) for energies $\gtrsim 10^{48}$ erg. For fiducial SGRB parameters, our limits require an observer viewer angle of $\gtrsim 20^{\circ}$. The radio and X-ray data can be jointly explained as the afterglow emission from an SGRB with a jet energy of $\sim 10^{49}-10^{50}$ erg that exploded in a uniform density environment with $n\sim 10^{-4}-10^{-2}$ cm$^{-3}$, viewed at an angle of $\sim 20^{\circ}-40^{\circ}$ from the jet axis. Using the results of our light curve and spectral modeling, in conjunction with the inference of the circumbinary density, we predict the emergence of late-time radio emission from the deceleration of the kilonova (KN) ejecta on a timescale of $\sim 5-10$ years that will remain detectable for decades with next-generation radio facilities, making GW\,170817 a compelling target for long-term radio monitoring.},
doi = {10.3847/2041-8213/aa905d},
journal = {The Astrophysical Journal. Letters},
number = 2,
volume = 848,
place = {United States},
year = {2017},
month = {10}
}

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    • 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

    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

    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

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


    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

    LOFAR 144-MHz follow-up observations of GW170817
    journal, April 2020

    • Broderick, J. W.; Shimwell, T. W.; Gourdji, K.
    • Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society, Vol. 494, Issue 4
    • DOI: 10.1093/mnras/staa950

    Late-time evolution of afterglows from off-axis neutron star mergers
    journal, August 2018

    • Lamb, Gavin P.; Mandel, Ilya; Resmi, Lekshmi
    • Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society, Vol. 481, Issue 2
    • DOI: 10.1093/mnras/sty2196

    Spectral puzzle of the off-axis gamma-ray burst in GW170817
    journal, June 2019

    • Ioka, Kunihito; Nakamura, Takashi
    • Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society, Vol. 487, Issue 4
    • DOI: 10.1093/mnras/stz1650

    On the Progenitor of Binary Neutron Star Merger GW170817
    other, January 2017

    • Abbott, B. P.; Al., Et
    • Bristol : Institute of Physics Publishing
    • DOI: 10.15488/2584

    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

    The Possible Submillimeter Bump and Accretion-jet in the Central Supermassive Black Hole of NGC 4993
    journal, March 2018


    Numerical Simulations of the Jet Dynamics and Synchrotron Radiation of Binary Neutron Star Merger Event GW170817/GRB 170817A
    journal, August 2018

    • Xie, Xiaoyi; Zrake, Jonathan; MacFadyen, Andrew
    • The Astrophysical Journal, Vol. 863, Issue 1
    • DOI: 10.3847/1538-4357/aacf9c

    Pre-merger Electromagnetic Counterparts of Binary Compact Stars
    journal, November 2018

    • Wang, Jie-Shuang; Peng, Fang-Kun; Wu, Kinwah
    • The Astrophysical Journal, Vol. 868, Issue 1
    • DOI: 10.3847/1538-4357/aae531

    Optimized Radio Follow-up of Binary Neutron-star Mergers
    journal, November 2018


    Constraining the Outflow Structure of the Binary Neutron Star Merger Event GW170817/GRB170817A with a Markov Chain Monte Carlo Analysis
    journal, December 2018


    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

    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

    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

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