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Gamma Ray Burst Discoveries by the Swift Mission

By Scott Barthelmy

Abstract

With 3 years of on-orbit operations (launched in Nov 2004), Swift has detected over 300 gammaray bursts (GRBs). The unique combination of quick and accurate position determinations by the BAT instrument, fast autonomous spacecraft slewing, and multi-band instrumentation (XRT and UVOT) has allowed Swift to accumulate a long list of discoveries about GRBs. These positions are also available to the ground follow-up community (via TDRSS and GCN) within 15-30 sec. A summary of these discoveries will be given (e.g. long and short GRB host associations, SN associations, flaring and on-going activity in the central engine). The Swift spacecraft and instruments are in fine working order with no signs of performance degradation. With an expected orbital lifetime well past 2020, the overlap with GLAST (launch in mid-2008) will yield greater than 30 GRBs/year with observations by both missions. This will provide an unprecedented wavelength coverage from optical to 100 GeV. The coordination of pointing Swift with GLAST will be described

Topics: Astrophysics
Year: 2008
OAI identifier: oai:casi.ntrs.nasa.gov:20080037747
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