T. Kruehler

University of Copenhagen, København, Capital Region, Denmark

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Publications (268)319.2 Total impact

  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: A long and intense gamma-ray burst (GRB) was detected by INTEGRAL on July 11 2012 with a duration of ~115s and fluence of 2.8x10^-4 erg cm^-2 in the 20 keV-8 MeV energy range. GRB 120711A was at z~1.405 and produced soft gamma-ray emission (>20 keV) for at least ~10 ks after the trigger. The GRB was observed by several ground-based telescopes that detected a powerful optical flash peaking at an R-band brightness of ~11.5 mag at ~126 s after the trigger. We present a comprehensive temporal and spectral analysis of the long-lasting soft gamma-ray emission detected in the 20-200 keV band with INTEGRAL, the Fermi/LAT post-GRB detection above 100 MeV, the soft X-ray afterglow from XMM-Newton, Chandra, and Swift and the optical/NIR detections from Watcher, Skynet, GROND, and REM. We modelled the long-lasting soft gamma-ray emission using the standard afterglow scenario, which indicates a forward shock origin. The combination of data extending from the NIR to GeV energies suggest that the emission is produced by a broken power-law spectrum consistent with synchrotron radiation. The afterglow is well modelled using a stratified wind-like environment with a density profile k~1.2, suggesting a massive star progenitor (i.e. Wolf-Rayet). The analysis of the reverse and forward shock emission reveals an initial Lorentz factor of ~120-340, a jet half-opening angle of ~2deg-5deg, and a baryon load of ~10^-5-10^-6 Msun consistent with the expectations of the fireball model when the emission is highly relativistic. Long-lasting soft gamma-ray emission from other INTEGRAL GRBs with high peak fluxes, such as GRB 041219A, was not detected, suggesting that a combination of high Lorentz factor, emission above 100 MeV, and possibly a powerful reverse shock are required. Similar long-lasting soft gamma-ray emission has recently been observed from the nearby and extremely bright Fermi/LAT burst GRB 130427A.
    05/2014;
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    ABSTRACT: Following the photometric observations of the counterpart of GRB 140512A (Pagani et al. GCN 16249) from the 2.5 m NOT (+ALFOSC) reported by de Ugarte Postigo et al. (GCN 16253) we obtained spectroscopic data. Observations consisted in 2x1800s exposures using Grism #4, which covers the range from 3800 to 9100. The mean observing epoch was May 13, 3:18:50 UT (7.78 hrs after the burst). The spectrum presents absorption features consistent with FeII and MgII at a common redshift of z=0.725, which we consider the most probable redshift for this event. http://gcn.gsfc.nasa.gov/gcn/gcn3/16310.gcn3
    GRB Coordinates Network, Circular Service, 16310. 05/2014;
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    ABSTRACT: We have observed the field of GRB 140512A (Pagani et al. GCN 16249) with the AlFOSC instrument on the 2.5 m Nordic Optical Telescope (La Palma, Spain), as part of the Stockholm remote observing school. Observations consisted of 3x300s imaging in R, starting at 02:10 UT (6.65 hrs after the burst). Observations were performed under variable seeing conditions of 2.0-2.5". Preliminary photometry, based on the USNO-B1.0 catalogue yields R~19.5 mag. Spectroscopic observations are ongoing. http://gcn.gsfc.nasa.gov/gcn/gcn3/16253.gcn3
    GRB Coordinates Network, Circular Service, 16253. 05/2014;
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    ABSTRACT: Observations of the afterglows of long gamma-ray bursts (GRBs) allow the study of star-forming galaxies across most of cosmic history. Here we present observations of GRB 111008A, from which we can measure metallicity, chemical abundance patterns, dust-to-metals ratio (DTM), and extinction of the GRB host galaxy at z = 5.0. The host absorption system is a damped Lyα absorber with a very large neutral hydrogen column density of and a metallicity of [S/H] = –1.70 ± 0.10. It is the highest-redshift GRB with such a precise metallicity measurement. The presence of fine-structure lines confirms the z = 5.0 system as the GRB host galaxy and makes this the highest redshift where Fe II fine-structure lines have been detected. The afterglow is mildly reddened with AV = 0.11 ± 0.04 mag, and the host galaxy has a DTM that is consistent with being equal to or lower than typical values in the Local Group.
    The Astrophysical Journal 04/2014; 785(2):150. · 6.73 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: At low redshift, a handful of gamma-ray bursts (GRBs) have been discovered with peak luminosities ($L_{\rm iso} < 10^{48.5}~\rm{erg\,s}^{-1}$) substantially lower than the average of the more distant ones ($L_{\rm iso} > 10^{49.5}~\rm{erg\,s}^{-1}$). The properties of several low-luminosity (low-$L$) GRBs indicate that they can be due to shock break-out, as opposed to the emission from ultrarelativistic jets. Owing to this, it is highly debated how both populations are connected, and whether there is a continuum between them. The burst at redshift $z=0.283$ from 2012 April 22 is one of the very few examples of intermediate-$L$ GRBs with a $\gamma$-ray luminosity of $L\sim10^{48.9}~\rm{erg\,s}^{-1}$ that have been detected up to now. Together with the robust detection of its accompanying supernova SN 2012bz, it has the potential to answer important questions on the origin of low- and high-$L$ GRBs and the GRB-SN connection. We carried out a spectroscopy campaign using medium- and low-resolution spectrographs at 6--10-m class telescopes, covering the time span of 37.3 days, and a multi-wavelength imaging campaign from radio to X-ray energies over a duration of $\sim270$ days. Furthermore, we used a tuneable filter centred at H$\alpha$ to map star formation in the host galaxy and the surrounding galaxies. We used these data to extract and model the properties of different radiation components and incorporate spectral-energy-distribution fitting techniques to extract the properties of the host galaxy. Modelling the light curve and spectral energy distribution from the radio to the X-rays revealed the blast-wave to expand with an initial Lorentz factor of $\Gamma_0\sim60$, low for a high-$L$ GRB, and that the afterglow had an exceptional low peak luminosity-density of $\lesssim2\times10^{30}~\rm{erg\,s}^{-1}\,\rm{Hz}^{-1}$ in the sub-mm. [Abridged]
    01/2014;
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    ABSTRACT: The extinction curves of interstellar dust in the local Universe show significant diversity along different sightlines and between different galaxies, in particular with regards to the presence (and relative strength) of the 2175 Angstrom bump feature. These locally-derived extinction curves are often used to correct for the effects of dust in the SEDs of galaxies at high redshift (z>1), but this process is quite uncertain. We use a large sample of high-z GRBs with well-studied afterglows permitting measurement of the extinction curve (including the presence/absence and relative strength of the 2175 Angstrom feature) along the burst sightline to explore the connection between extinction and bulk galaxy properties at high redshift. While host properties are strongly correlated the amount of dust seen along the GRB sightline (more obscured GRBs are located within more massive hosts), the nature of the dust does not show strong correlations with the host's overall properties. In particular, we demonstrate that the 2175 Angstrom feature can survive in galaxies with very high specific star-formation rate (and therefore a strong UV radiation field) in some cases, as well as within more quiescently star-forming galaxies. This suggests that dust properties within high-redshift galaxies may be influenced more by local phenomena than global ones and that, as in the Milky Way, extinction curves may differ substantially along different sightlines within high-z galaxies as well as between different galaxies.
    01/2014;
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    ABSTRACT: Since the advent of the Swift satellite it has been possible to obtain precise localisations of GRB positions of sub-arcsec accuracy within seconds, facilitating ground-based robotic telescopes to automatically slew to the target within seconds. This has yielded a plethora of observational data for the afterglow phase of the GRB, but the quantity of data (<2 keV) covering the initial prompt emission still remains small. Only in a handful of cases has it been possible obtain simultaneous coverage of the prompt emission in a multi-wavelength regime (gamma-ray to optical), as a result of: observing the field by chance prior to the GRB (e.g. 080319B/naked-eye burst), long-prompt emission (e.g., 080928, 110205A) or triggered on a pre-cursor (e.g., 041219A, 050820A, 061121). This small selection of bursts have shown both correlated and uncorrelated gamma-ray and optical light curve behaviour, and the multi-wavelength emission mechanism remains far from resolved (i.e. single population synchrotron self-Component, electron distributions, additional neutron components or residual collisions). Such multi-wavelength observations during the GRB prompt phase are pivotal in providing further insight on the poorly understood prompt emission mechanism. We add to this small sample the Swift burst 121217A that had two distinct periods of prompt emission separated by ~700 s, observed by Swift/BAT, Swift/XRT and Fermi/GBM. As a result of the time delay of the second emission, it enabled optical imaging (from 3 to 7 bands) to be taken with the GROND instrument to a resolution as fine as 10s. This multi-wavelength data will hopefully allow us to shed more light on the current picture of prompt emission physics.
    12/2013;
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    ABSTRACT: The mechanism that causes the prompt-emission episode of gamma-ray bursts (GRBs) is still widely debated despite there being thousands of prompt detections. The favoured internal shock model relates this emission to synchrotron radiation. However, it does not always explain the spectral indices of the shape of the spectrum, often fit with empirical functions. Multi-wavelength observations are therefore required to help investigate the possible underlying mechanisms that causes the prompt emission. We present GRB 121217A, for which we were able to observe its near-infrared (NIR) emission during a secondary prompt-emission episode with the Gamma-Ray Burst Optical Near-infrared Detector (GROND) in combination with the Swift and Fermi satellites, covering an energy range of 0.001 keV to 100 keV. We determine a photometric redshift of z=3.1+/-0.1 with a line-of-sight extinction of A_V~0 mag, utilising the optical/NIR SED. From the afterglow, we determine a bulk Lorentz factor of Gamma~250 and an emission radius of R<10^18 cm. The prompt-emission broadband spectral energy distribution is well fit with a broken power law with b1=-0.3+/-0.1, b2=0.6+/-0.1 that has a break at E=6.6+/-0.9 keV, which can be interpreted as the maximum injection frequency. Self-absorption by the electron population below energies of E_a<6 keV suggest a magnetic field strength of B~10^5 G. However, all the best fit models underpredict the flux observed in the NIR wavelengths, which also only rebrightens by a factor of ~2 during the second prompt emission episode, in stark contrast to the X-ray emission, which rebrightens by a factor of ~100, suggesting an afterglow component is dominating the emission. We present GRB 121217A one of the few GRBs for which there are multi-wavelength observations of the prompt-emission period and show that it can be understood with a synchrotron radiation model.
    12/2013;
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    ABSTRACT: In the past few years the number of well-sampled optical to NIR light curves of long Gamma-Ray Bursts (GRBs) has greatly increased particularly due to simultaneous multi-band imagers such as GROND. Combining these densely sampled ground-based data sets with the Swift UVOT and XRT space observations unveils a much more complex afterglow evolution than what was predicted by the most commonly invoked theoretical models. GRB 100814A represents a remarkable example of these interesting well-sampled events, showing a prominent late-time rebrightening in the optical to NIR bands and a complex spectral evolution. This represents a unique laboratory to test the different afterglow emission models. Here we study the nature of the complex afterglow emission of GRB 100814A in the framework of different theoretical models. Moreover, we compare the late-time chromatic rebrightening with those observed in other well-sampled long GRBs. We analysed the optical and NIR observations obtained with the seven-channel Gamma-Ray burst Optical and Near-infrared Detector at the 2.2 m MPG/ESO telescope together with the X-ray and UV data detected by the instruments onboard the Swift observatory. The broad-band afterglow evolution, achieved by constructing multi-instrument light curves and spectral energy distributions, will be discussed in the framework of different theoretical models. We find that the standard models that describe the broad-band afterglow emission within the external shock scenario fail to describe the complex evolution of GRB 100814A, and therefore more complex scenarios must be invoked. [abridged]
    12/2013;
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    ABSTRACT: CBET 3677 available at Central Bureau for Astronomical Telegrams.
    Central Bureau Electronic Telegrams. 10/2013;
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    ABSTRACT: The quasar Q0918+1636 (z = 3.07) has two intervening high-metallicity Damped Lyman α Absorbers (DLAs) along the line of sight, at redshifts of z = 2.412 and 2.583. The z = 2.583 DLA is located at a large impact parameter of 16.2 kpc, and despite this large impact parameter it has a very high metallicity (consistent with solar), a substantial fraction of H2 molecules and it is dusty as inferred from the reddened spectrum of the background QSO. The z = 2.412 DLA has a metallicity of [M/H] = -0.6 (based on Zn II and Si II). In this paper we present new observations of this interesting sightline consisting of deep multiband imaging and further VLT spectroscopy. By fitting stellar population synthesis models to the photometric Spectral Energy Distribution we constrain the physical properties of the z = 2.583 DLA galaxy, and we infer its morphology by fitting a Sérsic model to its surface brightness profile. We find it to be a relatively massive (M⋆ ≈ 1010 M⊙), strongly star-forming (SFR ≈ 30 M⊙ yr-1), dusty (E(B - V) = 0.4) galaxy with a disc-like morphology. We detect strong emission lines from the z = 2.583 DLA ([O II] λ3727, [O III] λλ4960, 5007, Hβ and Hα, albeit at low signal-to-noise ratio except for the [O III] λ5007 line). The metallicity derived from the emission lines is consistent with the absorption metallicity (12 + log (O/H) = 8.8 ± 0.2). We also detect [O III] λ5007 emission from the galaxy counterpart of the z = 2.412 DLA at a small impact parameter (<2 kpc). Overall our findings are consistent with the emerging picture that high-metallicity DLAs are associated with relatively luminous and massive galaxy counterparts, compared to typical DLAs.
    Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society 09/2013; · 5.52 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: The mergers of neutron stars have been predicted to cause an r-process supernova - a luminous near-infrared transient powered by the radioactive decay of freshly formed heavy metals. An r-process supernova, or kilonova, has recently been discovered coincident with the short-duration gamma-ray burst GRB 130603B, simultaneously confirming the widely-held theory of the origin of most short-durations GRBs in neutron star mergers. We report here the absorption spectrum of the afterglow of this GRB. From it we determine the redshift of the burst and the properties of the host galaxy and the environment in which the merger occurred. The merger is not associated with the most star-forming region of the galaxy; however, it did occur in a dense region, implying a rapid merger or a low natal kick velocity for the neutron star binary.
    08/2013;
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    ABSTRACT: The quasar Q0918+1636 (z=3.07) has two intervening high-metallicity Damped Lyman-alpha Absorbers (DLAs) along the line of sight, at redshifts of z=2.412 and 2.583. The z=2.583 DLA is located at a large impact parameter of 16.2 kpc, and despite this large impact parameter it has a very high metallicity (consistent with solar), a substantial fraction of H_2 molecules, and it is dusty as inferred from the reddened spectrum of the background QSO. The z=2.412 DLA has a metallicity of [M/H]=-0.6 (based on ZnII and SiII). In this paper we present new observations of this interesting sightline. HST/WFC3 imaging was obtained in the F606W, F105W and F160W bands. This is complemented by ground-based imaging in the u-, g-bands as well as K_s observations in the near-infrared (NIR). In addition, we present further spectroscopy with the ESO/VLT X-Shooter spectrograph. Based on these observations we obtain the following results: By fitting stellar population synthesis models to the photometric SED we constrain the physical properties of the z=2.583 DLA galaxy, and we infer its morphology by fitting a Sersic model to its surface brightness profile. We find it to be a relatively massive (M_star 10^10 M_sun), strongly star-forming (SFR~30 M_sun / yr, dusty (E_(B-V)=0.4) galaxy with a disk-like morphology. We detect most of the strong emission lines from the z=2.583 DLA [OIII],3727, [OIII],4960, [OIII],5007, Hbeta, and Halpha, albeit at low signal-to-noise (SN) ratio except for the [OIII],5007 line. We also detect [OIII],5007 emission from the galaxy counterpart of the z=2.412 DLA at a small impact parameter (<2 kpc). Overall our findings are consistent with the emerging picture that high-metallicity DLAs are associated with relatively (compared to typical DLAs) luminous and massive galaxy counterparts.
    06/2013;

Publication Stats

580 Citations
319.20 Total Impact Points

Institutions

  • 2011–2014
    • University of Copenhagen
      • Dark Cosmology Centre (DARK)
      København, Capital Region, Denmark
  • 2012
    • Leiden University
      • Leiden Observartory
      Leyden, South Holland, Netherlands
    • Stanford University
      • Department of Physics
      Palo Alto, California, United States
  • 2009–2012
    • Max Planck Institute for Extraterrestrial Physics
      Arching, Bavaria, Germany
  • 2008
    • Technische Universität München
      München, Bavaria, Germany