Follow up of GW170817 and its electromagnetic counterpart by Australian-led observing programmes

Andreoni, I. and Ackley, K. and Cooke, J. and Acharyya, A. and Allison, J.R. and Anderson, G.E. and Ashley, M.C.B. and Baade, D. and Bailes, M. and Bannister, K. and Beardsley, A. and Bessell, M.S. and Bian, F. and Bland, P.A. and Boer, M. and Booler, T. and Brandeker, A. and Brown, I.S. and Buckley, D.A.H. and Chang, S.-W. and Coward, D.M. and Crawford, S. and Crisp, H. and Crosse, B. and Cucchiara, A. and Cupák, M. and de Gois, J.S. and Deller, A. and Devillepoix, H.A.R. and Dobie, D. and Elmer, E. and Emrich, D. and Farah, W. and Farrell, T.J. and Franzen, T. and Gaensler, B.M. and Galloway, D.K. and Gendre, B. and Giblin, T. and Goobar, A. and Green, J. and Hancock, P.J. and Hartig, B.A.D. and Howell, E.J. and Horsley, L. and Hotan, A. and Howie, R.M. and Hu, L. and Hu, Y. and James, C.W. and Johnston, S. and Johnston-Hollitt, M. and Kaplan, D.L. and Kasliwal, M. and Keane, E.F. and Kenney, D. and Klotz, A. and Lau, R. and Laugier, R. and Lenc, E. and Li, X. and Liang, E. and Lidman, C. and Luvaul, L.C. and Lynch, C. and Ma, B. and Macpherson, D. and Mao, J. and McClelland, D.E. and McCully, C. and Möller, A. and Morales, M.F. and Morris, D. and Murphy, T. and Noysena, K. and Onken, C.A. and Orange, N.B. and Osłowski, S. and Pallot, D. and Paxman, J. and Potter, S.B. and Pritchard, T. and Raja, W. and Ridden-Harper, R. and Romero-Colmenero, E. and Sadler, E.M. and Sansom, E.K. and Scalzo, R.A. and Schmidt, B.P. and Scott, S.M. and Seghouani, N. and Shang, Z. and Shannon, R.M. and Shao, L. and Shara, M.M. and Sharp, R. and Sokolowski, M. and Sollerman, J. and Staff, J. and Steele, K. and Sun, T. and Suntzeff, N.B. and Tao, C. and Tingay, S. and Towner, M.C. and Thierry, P. and Trott, C. and Tucker, B.E. and Väisänen, P. and Krishnan, V. Venkatraman and Walker, M. and Wang, L. and Wang, X. and Wayth, R. and Whiting, M. and Williams, A. and Williams, T. and Wolf, C. and Wu, C. and Wu, X. and Yang, J. and Yuan, X. and Zhang, H. and Zhou, J. and Zovaro, H. (2017) Follow up of GW170817 and its electromagnetic counterpart by Australian-led observing programmes. Publications of the Astronomical Society of Australia, 34 . ISSN 1323-3580

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The discovery of the first electromagnetic counterpart to a gravitational wave signal has generated follow-up observations by over 50 facilities world-wide, ushering in the new era of multi-messenger astronomy. In this paper, we present follow-up observations of the gravitational wave event GW170817 and its electromagnetic counterpart SSS17a/DLT17ck (IAU label AT2017gfo) by 14 Australian telescopes and partner observatories as part of Australian-based and Australian-led research programs. We report early- to late-time multi-wavelength observations, including optical imaging and spectroscopy, mid-infrared imaging, radio imaging, and searches for fast radio bursts. Our optical spectra reveal that the transient source emission cooled from approximately 6 400 K to 2 100 K over a 7-d period and produced no significant optical emission lines. The spectral profiles, cooling rate, and photometric light curves are consistent with the expected outburst and subsequent processes of a binary neutron star merger. Star formation in the host galaxy probably ceased at least a Gyr ago, although there is evidence for a galaxy merger. Binary pulsars with short (100 Myr) decay times are therefore unlikely progenitors, but pulsars like PSR B1534+12 with its 2.7 Gyr coalescence time could produce such a merger. The displacement (~2.2 kpc) of the binary star system from the centre of the main galaxy is not unusual for stars in the host galaxy or stars originating in the merging galaxy, and therefore any constraints on the kick velocity imparted to the progenitor are poor.

Item Type: Article
Keywords: gamma-ray burst: individual: GRB170817A ; gravitational waves ; stars: neutron ; supernovae: general ; supernovae: individual: AT2017gfo
Schools/Departments: University of Nottingham, UK > Faculty of Science > School of Physics and Astronomy
Identification Number: 10.1017/pasa.2017.65
Depositing User: Eprints, Support
Date Deposited: 14 Feb 2018 09:52
Last Modified: 14 Feb 2018 17:54

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