A Search for TeV Counterparts to Classical Gamma-Ray Bursts

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Session 53 -- Gamma Ray Bursts
Oral presentation, Thursday, June 15, 1995, 10:00am - 11:30am

[53.07] A Search for TeV Counterparts to Classical Gamma-Ray Bursts

V.Connaughton (SAO-UCD)

Four years of CGRO observations with over 1000 recorded BATSE Gamma-Ray bursts have failed to pinpoint the source of these phenomena. The search for counterparts to these BATSE bursts is vital for source identification; to date these searches have concentrated on counterparts at longer wavelengths. However, a TeV counterpart, if found, would greatly restrict the cosmological source models due to the predicted absorption of TeV photons by pair-production with the infra-red photons in intergalactic space (De Jager et al. 1994) and would severely limit the source emission mechanisms.

The existence of BACODINE for the distribution of BATSE burst coordinates makes an early monitoring of burst locations possible. The limited field of view and slew time of the Whipple Observatory's 10-metre reflector makes near-simultaneous observations of source locations unlikely, but detection of delayed high-energy emission from BATSE locations by EGRET (Hurley et al. 1994), coupled with the high burst sensitivity and good angular resolution of the Whipple telescope, make a TeV counterpart both desirable and attainable. We report here on observations of the Whipple Observatory's gamma-ray telescope in response to BACODINE burst notifications, and on instrumental improvements that will increase the probability of future detections.

De Jager O.C. et al. Nature, 369 (1994), 294 Hurley K. et al. Nature, 372 (1994), 652

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