AAS 197, January 2001
Session 17. Frontiers of Astrophysics IV
Display, Monday, January 8, 2001, 9:30am-7:00pm, Exhibit Hall

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[17.06] The Link Between Neutrons, the Weak Interaction, and the Gamma-Ray Burst Baryon-Loading Problem

K. Abazajian, J. Pruet, G.M. Fuller (University of California, San Diego)

Here we describe a surprising link between the weak-interaction and neutrino physics deep within the Gamma-Ray Burst (GRB) central engine and the acceleration of the fireball which produces the \gamma-rays. In particular, we discuss how the baryon loading problem in GRB fireballs depends on whether the baryons are neutrons or protons. It is found that a large neutron excess can result in a reduced transfer of energy from relativistic particles to baryons in the fireball. In turn, this implies that the final Lorentz factor of the fireball can be increased significantly for a given initial energy input. This raises the possibility that observed electromagnetic or neutrino signatures could give key clues into the weak-interaction history of fireballs which, in turn, could give unique insights into the nature of GRBs.

If you would like more information about this abstract, please follow the link to http://superbeast.ucsd.edu/~kev/aas01. This link was provided by the author. When you follow it, you will leave the Web site for this meeting; to return, you should use the Back comand on your browser.

The author(s) of this abstract have provided an email address for comments about the abstract: kabazajian@ucsd.edu

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