Pair Fireball Precursors of Neutron Star Mergers

Pair Fireball Precursors of Neutron Star Mergers Abstract If at least one neutron star (NS) is magnetized in a binary NS merger, then the orbital motion of the conducting companion during the final inspiral induces a strong voltage and current along the magnetic field lines connecting the NSs. If a modest fraction η of the extracted electromagnetic power extracted accelerates relativistic particles, the resulting gamma-ray emission a compact volume will result in the formation of an electron-positron pair fireball. Applying a steady-state pair wind model, we quantify the detectability of the precursor fireball with gamma-ray satellites. For η ∼ 1 the gamma-ray detection horizon of Dmax ≈ 10( Bd /10 14 G) 3/4 is much closer than the Advanced LIGO/Virgo horizon of 200 Mpc, unless the NS surface magnetic field strength is very large, Bd ≳ 10 15 G. Given the quasi-isotropic nature of the emission, mergers with weaker NS fields could contribute a nearby population of short gamma-ray bursts. Power not dissipated close to the binary is carried to infinity along the open field lines by a large scale Poynting flux. Reconnection within this outflow, well outside of the pair photosphere, provides a potential site for non-thermal emission, such as a coherent millisecond radio burst. neutron star: mergers, gamma ray bursts © 2016 The Authors Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Royal Astronomical Society http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society: Letters Oxford University Press

Pair Fireball Precursors of Neutron Star Mergers

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Publisher
Oxford University Press
Copyright
© 2016 The Authors Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Royal Astronomical Society
ISSN
1745-3925
eISSN
1745-3933
D.O.I.
10.1093/mnrasl/slw132
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

Abstract If at least one neutron star (NS) is magnetized in a binary NS merger, then the orbital motion of the conducting companion during the final inspiral induces a strong voltage and current along the magnetic field lines connecting the NSs. If a modest fraction η of the extracted electromagnetic power extracted accelerates relativistic particles, the resulting gamma-ray emission a compact volume will result in the formation of an electron-positron pair fireball. Applying a steady-state pair wind model, we quantify the detectability of the precursor fireball with gamma-ray satellites. For η ∼ 1 the gamma-ray detection horizon of Dmax ≈ 10( Bd /10 14 G) 3/4 is much closer than the Advanced LIGO/Virgo horizon of 200 Mpc, unless the NS surface magnetic field strength is very large, Bd ≳ 10 15 G. Given the quasi-isotropic nature of the emission, mergers with weaker NS fields could contribute a nearby population of short gamma-ray bursts. Power not dissipated close to the binary is carried to infinity along the open field lines by a large scale Poynting flux. Reconnection within this outflow, well outside of the pair photosphere, provides a potential site for non-thermal emission, such as a coherent millisecond radio burst. neutron star: mergers, gamma ray bursts © 2016 The Authors Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Royal Astronomical Society

Journal

Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society: LettersOxford University Press

Published: Jul 4, 2016

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