GRB 080913 at redshift 6.7

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review

  • J. Greiner
  • T. Krühler
  • A. Rossi
  • R. Schwarz
  • S. Klose
  • S. Savaglio
  • N. R. Tanvir
  • S. McBreen
  • T. Totani
  • B. B. Zhang
  • X. F. Wu
  • S. D. Barthelmy
  • A. P. Beardmore
  • P. Ferrero
  • N. Gehrels
  • D. A. Kann
  • N. Kawai
  • A. Küpcü Yoldas
  • P. Mészáros
  • B. Milvang-Jensen
  • S. R. Oates
  • D. Pierini
  • P. Schady
  • K. Toma
  • P. M. Vreeswijk
  • A. Yoldas
  • B. Zhang
  • P. Afonso
  • K. Aoki
  • D. N. Burrows
  • C. Clemens
  • R. Filgas
  • Z. Haiman
  • D. H. Hartmann
  • G. Hasinger
  • E. Jehin
  • A. J. Levan
  • E. W. Liang
  • T.-S. Pyo
  • S. Schulze
  • G. Szokoly
  • K. Terada
  • K. Wiersema
We report on the detection by Swift of GRB 080913, and subsequent optical/near-infrared follow-up observations by GROND, which led to the discovery of its optical/NIR afterglow and the recognition of its high-z nature via the detection of a spectral break between the i' and z' bands. Spectroscopy obtained at the ESO-VLT revealed a continuum extending down to ¿ = 9400 Å, and zero flux for 7500 Å<¿ < 9400 Å, which we interpret as the onset of a Gunn-Peterson trough at z = 6.695± 0.025 (95.5% confidence level), making GRB 080913 the highest-redshift gamma-ray burst (GRB) to date, and more distant than the highest-redshift QSO. We note that many redshift indicators that are based on promptly available burst or afterglow properties have failed for GRB 080913. We report on our follow-up campaign and compare the properties of GRB 080913 with bursts at lower redshift. In particular, since the afterglow of this burst is fainter than typical for GRBs, we show that 2 m class telescopes can identify most high-redshift GRBs.
Original languageEnglish
JournalAstrophysical Journal
Issue number2
Pages (from-to)1610-1620
Number of pages10
Publication statusPublished - 2009

Bibliographical note

Keywords: early universe; gamma rays: bursts; radiation mechanisms: non-thermal

ID: 13012173