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  1. ABSTRACT We present a low-frequency (170–200 MHz) search for prompt radio emission associated with the long GRB 210419A using the rapid-response mode of the Murchison Widefield Array (MWA), triggering observations with the Voltage Capture System for the first time. The MWA began observing GRB 210419A within 89 s of its detection by Swift, enabling us to capture any dispersion delayed signal emitted by this gamma-ray burst (GRB) for a typical range of redshifts. We conducted a standard single pulse search with a temporal and spectral resolution of $100\, \mu$s and 10 kHz over a broad range of dispersion measures from 1 to $5000\, \text{pc}\, \text{cm}^{-3}$, but none were detected. However, fluence upper limits of 77–224 Jy ms derived over a pulse width of 0.5–10 ms and a redshift of 0.6 < z < 4 are some of the most stringent at low radio frequencies. We compared these fluence limits to the GRB jet–interstellar medium interaction model, placing constraints on the fraction of magnetic energy (ϵB ≲ [0.05–0.1]). We also searched for signals during the X-ray flaring activity of GRB 210419A on minute time-scales in the image domain and found no emission, resulting in an intensity upper limit of $0.57\, \text{Jy}\, \text{beam}^{-1}$, corresponding to a constraint ofmore »ϵB ≲ 10−3. Our non-detection could imply that GRB 210419A was at a high redshift, there was not enough magnetic energy for low-frequency emission, or the radio waves did not escape from the GRB environment.« less
    Free, publicly-accessible full text available June 21, 2023
  2. Abstract Many short gamma-ray bursts (GRBs) originate from binary neutron star mergers, and there are several theories that predict the production of coherent, prompt radio signals either prior, during, or shortly following the merger, as well as persistent pulsar-like emission from the spin-down of a magnetar remnant. Here we present a low frequency (170–200 MHz) search for coherent radio emission associated with nine short GRBs detected by the Swift and/or Fermi satellites using the Murchison Widefield Array (MWA) rapid-response observing mode. The MWA began observing these events within 30–60 s of their high-energy detection, enabling us to capture any dispersion delayed signals emitted by short GRBs for a typical range of redshifts. We conducted transient searches at the GRB positions on timescales of 5 s, 30 s, and 2 min, resulting in the most constraining flux density limits on any associated transient of 0.42, 0.29, and 0.084 Jy, respectively. We also searched for dispersed signals at a temporal and spectral resolution of 0.5 s and 1.28 MHz, but none were detected. However, the fluence limit of 80–100 Jy ms derived for GRB 190627A is the most stringent to date for a short GRB. Assuming the formation of a stable magnetarmore »for this GRB, we compared the fluence and persistent emission limits to short GRB coherent emission models, placing constraints on key parameters including the radio emission efficiency of the nearly merged neutron stars ( $\epsilon_r\lesssim10^{-4}$ ), the fraction of magnetic energy in the GRB jet ( $\epsilon_B\lesssim2\times10^{-4}$ ), and the radio emission efficiency of the magnetar remnant ( $\epsilon_r\lesssim10^{-3}$ ). Comparing the limits derived for our full GRB sample (along with those in the literature) to the same emission models, we demonstrate that our fluence limits only place weak constraints on the prompt emission predicted from the interaction between the relativistic GRB jet and the interstellar medium for a subset of magnetar parameters. However, the 30-min flux density limits were sensitive enough to theoretically detect the persistent radio emission from magnetar remnants up to a redshift of $z\sim0.6$ . Our non-detection of this emission could imply that some GRBs in the sample were not genuinely short or did not result from a binary neutron star merger, the GRBs were at high redshifts, these mergers formed atypical magnetars, the radiation beams of the magnetar remnants were pointing away from Earth, or the majority did not form magnetars but rather collapse directly into black holes.« less
    Free, publicly-accessible full text available January 1, 2023
  3. Abstract We report the discovery of seven new Galactic pulsars with the Canadian Hydrogen Intensity Mapping Experiment’s Fast Radio Burst (CHIME/FRB) backend. These sources were first identified via single pulses in CHIME/FRB, then followed up with CHIME/Pulsar. Four sources appear to be rotating radio transients, pulsar-like sources with occasional single-pulse emission with an underlying periodicity. Of those four sources, three have detected periods ranging from 220 ms to 2.726 s. Three sources have more persistent but still intermittent emission and are likely intermittent or nulling pulsars. We have determined phase-coherent timing solutions for the latter two. These seven sources are the first discovery of previously unknown Galactic sources with CHIME/FRB and highlight the potential of fast radio burst detection instruments to search for intermittent Galactic radio sources.
  4. Free, publicly-accessible full text available July 14, 2023
  5. Abstract The Canadian Hydrogen Intensity Mapping Experiment (CHIME)/FRB experiment has detected thousands of fast radio bursts (FRBs) due to its sensitivity and wide field of view; however, its low angular resolution prevents it from localizing events to their host galaxies. Very long baseline interferometry (VLBI), triggered by FRB detections from CHIME/FRB will solve the challenge of localization for non-repeating events. Using a refurbished 10 m radio dish at the Algonquin Radio Observatory located in Ontario Canada, we developed a testbed for a VLBI experiment with a theoretical λ / D ≲ 30 mas. We provide an overview of the 10 m system and describe its refurbishment, the data acquisition, and a procedure for fringe fitting that simultaneously estimates the geometric delay used for localization and the dispersive delay from the ionosphere. Using single pulses from the Crab pulsar, we validate the system and localization procedure, and analyze the clock stability between sites, which is critical for coherently delay referencing an FRB event. We find a localization of ∼200 mas is possible with the performance of the current system (single-baseline). Furthermore, for sources with insufficient signal or restricted wideband to simultaneously measure both geometric and ionospheric delays, we show that themore »differential ionospheric contribution between the two sites must be measured to a precision of 1 × 10 −8 pc cm −3 to provide a reasonable localization from a detection in the 400–800 MHz band. Finally we show detection of an FRB observed simultaneously in the CHIME and the Algonquin 10 m telescope, the first non-repeating FRB in this long baseline. This project serves as a testbed for the forthcoming CHIME/FRB Outriggers project.« less
    Free, publicly-accessible full text available January 14, 2023
  6. Abstract

    The repeating FRB 20201124A was first discovered by CHIME/FRB in November of 2020, after which it was seen to repeat a few times over several months. It entered a period of high activity in April of 2021, at which time several observatories recorded tens to hundreds more bursts from the source. These follow-up observations enabled precise localization and host-galaxy identification. In this paper, we report on the CHIME/FRB-detected bursts from FRB 20201124A, including their best-fit morphologies, fluences, and arrival times. The large exposure time of the CHIME/FRB telescope toward the location of this source allows us to constrain its rates of activity. We analyze the repetition rates over different spans of time, constraining the rate prior to discovery to <3.4 day−1(at 3σ), and demonstrate a significant change in the event rate following initial detection. Lastly, we perform a maximum-likelihood estimation of a power-law luminosity function, finding a best-fit indexα= −4.6 ± 1.3 ± 0.6, with a break at a fluence threshold ofFmin16.6Jy ms, consistent with the fluence completeness limit of the observations. This index is consistent within uncertainties with those of other repeating FRBs for which it has been determined.

  7. Abstract The Murchison Widefield Array (MWA) is an electronically steered low-frequency (<300 MHz) radio interferometer, with a ‘slew’ time less than 8 s. Low-frequency (∼100 MHz) radio telescopes are ideally suited for rapid response follow-up of transients due to their large field of view, the inverted spectrum of coherent emission, and the fact that the dispersion delay between a 1 GHz and 100 MHz pulse is on the order of 1–10 min for dispersion measures of 100–2000 pc/cm 3 . The MWA has previously been used to provide fast follow-up for transient events including gamma-ray bursts (GRBs), fast radio bursts (FRBs), and gravitational waves, using systems that respond to gamma-ray coordinates network packet-based notifications. We describe a system for automatically triggering MWA observations of such events, based on Virtual Observatory Event standard triggers, which is more flexible, capable, and accurate than previous systems. The system can respond to external multi-messenger triggers, which makes it well-suited to searching for prompt coherent radio emission from GRBs, the study of FRBs and gravitational waves, single pulse studies of pulsars, and rapid follow-up of high-energy superflares from flare stars. The new triggering system has the capability to trigger observations in both the regular correlatormore »mode (limited to ≥0.5 s integrations) and using the Voltage Capture System (VCS, 0.1 ms integration) of the MWA and represents a new mode of operation for the MWA. The upgraded standard correlator triggering capability has been in use since MWA observing semester 2018B (July–Dec 2018), and the VCS and buffered mode triggers will become available for observing in a future semester.« less
  8. Abstract The Murchison Widefield Array (MWA) is an open access telescope dedicated to studying the low-frequency (80–300 MHz) southern sky. Since beginning operations in mid-2013, the MWA has opened a new observational window in the southern hemisphere enabling many science areas. The driving science objectives of the original design were to observe 21 cm radiation from the Epoch of Reionisation (EoR), explore the radio time domain, perform Galactic and extragalactic surveys, and monitor solar, heliospheric, and ionospheric phenomena. All together $60+$ programs recorded 20 000 h producing 146 papers to date. In 2016, the telescope underwent a major upgrade resulting in alternating compact and extended configurations. Other upgrades, including digital back-ends and a rapid-response triggering system, have been developed since the original array was commissioned. In this paper, we review the major results from the prior operation of the MWA and then discuss the new science paths enabled by the improved capabilities. We group these science opportunities by the four original science themes but also include ideas for directions outside these categories.
  9. Abstract Isolated neutron stars that are asymmetric with respect to their spin axis are possible sources of detectable continuous gravitational waves. This paper presents a fully coherent search for such signals from eighteen pulsars in data from LIGO and Virgo’s third observing run (O3). For known pulsars, efficient and sensitive matched-filter searches can be carried out if one assumes the gravitational radiation is phase-locked to the electromagnetic emission. In the search presented here, we relax this assumption and allow both the frequency and the time derivative of the frequency of the gravitational waves to vary in a small range around those inferred from electromagnetic observations. We find no evidence for continuous gravitational waves, and set upper limits on the strain amplitude for each target. These limits are more constraining for seven of the targets than the spin-down limit defined by ascribing all rotational energy loss to gravitational radiation. In an additional search, we look in O3 data for long-duration (hours–months) transient gravitational waves in the aftermath of pulsar glitches for six targets with a total of nine glitches. We report two marginal outliers from this search, but find no clear evidence for such emission either. The resulting duration-dependent strain uppermore »limits do not surpass indirect energy constraints for any of these targets.« less
    Free, publicly-accessible full text available June 1, 2023