Vol 20, No 2

A quark nova in the wake of a core-collapse supernova: a unifying model for long duration gamma-ray bursts and fast radio bursts

Rachid Ouyed, Denis Leahy, Nico Koning


Abstract By appealing to a quark nova (QN; the explosive transition of a neutron star to a quark star) in the wake of a core-collapse supernova (CCSN) explosion of a massive star, we develop a unified model for long duration gamma-ray bursts (LGRBs) and fast radio bursts (FRBs). The time delay (years to decades) between the SN and the QN, and the fragmented nature (i.e., millions of chunks) of the relativistic QN ejecta are key to yielding a robust LGRB engine. In our model, an LGRB light curve exhibits the interaction of the fragmented QN ejecta with turbulent (i.e., filamentary and magnetically saturated) SN ejecta which is shaped by its interaction with an underlying pulsar wind nebula (PWN). The afterglow is due to the interaction of the QN chunks, exiting the SN ejecta, with the surrounding medium. Our model can fit BAT/XRT prompt and afterglow light curves simultaneously with their spectra, thus yielding the observed properties of LGRBs (e.g., the Band function and the X-ray flares). We find that the peak luminosity-peak photon energy relationship (i.e., the Yonetoku law), and the isotropic energy-peak photon energy relationship (i.e., the Amati law) are not fundamental but phenomenological. FRB-like emission in our model results from coherent synchrotron emission (CSE) when the QN chunks interact with non-turbulent weakly magnetized PWN-SN ejecta, where conditions are prone to the Weibel instability. Magnetic field amplification induced by the Weibel instability in the shocked chunk frame sets the bunching length for electrons and pairs to radiate coherently. The resulting emission frequency, luminosity and duration in our model are consistent with FRB data. We find a natural unification of high-energy burst phenomena from FRBs (i.e., those connected to CCSNe) to LGRBs including X-ray flashes (XRFs) and X-ray rich GRBs (XRR-GRBs) as well as superluminous SNe (SLSNe). We find a possible connection between ultra-high energy cosmic rays and FRBs and propose that a QN following a binary neutron star merger can yield a short duration GRB (SGRB) with fits to BAT/XRT light curves.


Keywords stars: neutron — stars: quark — pulsars: general — supernovae: general — gamma-ray burst: general — fast radio burst: general

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