AAS 205th Meeting, 9-13 January 2005
Session 160 GRBs: Observatories and Observations
Oral, Thursday, January 13, 2005, 10:00-11:30am, Pacific Salon 1

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[160.08] Discovery of the Young Optical Afterglow of GRB040924

D. B. Fox (Caltech Astronomy), Caltech-NRAO GRB Collaboration

We report the discovery and early-time optical and near-infrared follow-up of the afterglow of the gamma-ray burst GRB040924, deriving a light curve for the afterglow in the R and Ks bands that extends from 15 minutes to 1 hour after the burst. A relatively slow early-time decay (power-law index alpha=-0.7) suggests that we observe the afterglow while the synchrotron cooling frequency is still above the optical band. We will discuss our observations in the context of other data gathered for this event, and consider the prospects for such studies given the many more early-time light curves that will be gathered following the launch of the Swift satellite.

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Bulletin of the American Astronomical Society, 36 5
© 2004. The American Astronomical Society.