Inverse compton x-ray flare from gamma-ray burst reverse shock

S. Kobayashi, B. Zhang, P. Mészáros, D. Burrows

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

61 Scopus citations


We study synchrotron self-inverse Compton radiation from a reverse shock fireball. If the inverse Compton process dominates the cooling of shocked electrons, an X-ray flare produced by the first-order Compton scattering would emerge in the very early afterglow phase, with the bulk of the shock energy radiated in the second-order scattering component at 10-100 MeV. The dominance of inverse Compton cooling leads to the lack of prompt optical flashes. We show that for plausible parameters this scattering process can produce an X-ray flare with a relative amplitude change of a factor of several. Flares with a larger amplitude and multiple X-ray flares in a single event are likely to be produced by another mechanism (e.g., internal shocks).

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)391-395
Number of pages5
JournalAstrophysical Journal
Issue number1 I
StatePublished - Jan 20 2007

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Astronomy and Astrophysics
  • Space and Planetary Science


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