Multiwavelength afterglows in gamma-ray bursts: Refreshed shock and jet effects

A. Panaitescu, P. Mészáros, M. J. Rees

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

199 Scopus citations


We present an analytical approach to calculate the hydrodynamics of the interaction between a relativistic ejecta and a surrounding medium, whose evolution serves as a model for gamma-ray burst (GRB) afterglows. We investigate the effect of the relevant model parameters on the X-ray, optical, and radio fluxes and the effect of a refreshed shock energy input and anisotropy in the ejecta on the shape of the light curves. We compare our numerical results to observed afterglows and give a quantitative description of the conditions (geometry and physical parameters) in the ejecta that are compatible with the light curves of the GRB 970508 afterglow, for which a large number of accurate flux measurements are available. We find that the radio, optical, and X-ray light curves of this afterglow can be explained satisfactorily within the spherically symmetric fireball model, assuming a delayed energy injection, or by an axially symmetric jet surrounded by a less energetic outflow.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)314-324
Number of pages11
JournalAstrophysical Journal
Issue number1 PART I
StatePublished - 1998

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Astronomy and Astrophysics
  • Space and Planetary Science


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