AAS 206th Meeting, 29 May - 2 June 2005
Session 29 X-Ray Flashes
Topical Session, Tuesday, 2:30-4:00pm, 4:15-6:00pm, May 31, 2005, 102 E

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[29.01] Discovery of X-Ray Flashes by the BeppoSAX WFC

J. Heise (SRON-Utrecht)

I review the Wide Field Camera (WFC) X-ray data onboard the SAX satellite that lead to the discovery of X-ray Flashes (XRFs). XRFs are a subclass of high-energy transient sources (short Fast X-ray Transients FXTs lasting for minutes). The X-ray (2-30 keV) data by itself point to an extragalactic origin and thus to an origin in explosive events with duration of order minutes and total energies comparable to GammaRay Bursts (GRBs). Through timely (within hours) and accurate (within arcmins)localization, at first with the WFCs and now with HETE, afterglows have been discovered, confirming the origin in explosive events and showing total energetics comparable with GRB events, possibly in some cases smaller. XRFS are a common phenomenon on the sky, occuring once per two or three days above current detection thresholds. I will discuss the X-ray counterparts of GRBs and show the (spectral) evidence that XRFs, X-ray rich GRBs and GRBs form a continuum. XRFs might not be the only class of extragalactic high energetic X-ray transient sources. I will show some examples of a possible other type.

If you would like more information about this abstract, please follow the link to http://www.sron.nl/~jheise/wfc. 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: j.heise@sron.nl

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Bulletin of the American Astronomical Society, 37 #2
© 2005. The American Astronomical Soceity.