The second-closest gamma-ray burst: Sub-luminous GRB 111005A with no supernova in a super-solar metallicity environment

Michał J. Michałowski, Dong Xu, Jamie Stevens, Andrew Levan, Jun Yang, Zsolt Paragi, Atish Kamble, An Li Tsai, Helmut Dannerbauer, Alexander J. Van Der Horst, Lang Shao, David Crosby, Gianfranco Gentile, Elizabeth Stanway, Klaas Wiersema, Johan P.U. Fynbo, Nial R. Tanvir, Peter Kamphuis, Michael Garrett, Przemysław Bartczak

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


We report the detection of the radio afterglow of a long gamma-ray burst (GRB) 111005A at 5-345 GHz, including very long baseline interferometry observations with a positional error of 0.2 mas. The afterglow position is coincident with the disc of a galaxy ESO 58049 at z = 0.01326 (∼1″ from its centre), which makes GRB 111005A the second-closest GRB known to date, after GRB 980425. The radio afterglow of GRB 111005A was an order of magnitude less luminous than those of local low-luminosity GRBs, and obviously less luminous than those of cosmological GRBs. The radio flux was approximately constant and then experienced an unusually rapid decay a month after the GRB explosion. Similarly to only two other GRBs, we did not find the associated supernovae (SNe), despite deep near- and mid-infrared observations 1-9 days after the GRB explosion, reaching ∼20 times fainter than other SNe associated with GRBs. Moreover, we measured a twice-solar metallicity for the GRB location. The low y-ray and radio luminosities, rapid decay, lack of a SN, and super-solar metallicity suggest that GRB 111005A represents a rare class of GRB that is different from typical core-collapse events. We modelled the spectral energy distribution of the GRB 111005A host finding that it is a moderately star-forming dwarf galaxy, similar to the host of GRB 980425. The existence of two local GRBs in such galaxies is still consistent with the hypothesis that the GRB rate is proportional to the cosmic star formation rate (SFR) density, but suggests that the GRB rate is biased towards low SFRs. Using the far-infrared detection of ESO 580-49, we conclude that the hosts of both GRBs 111005A and 980425 exhibit lower dust content than what would be expected from their stellar masses and optical colors.

Original languageEnglish
Article numberA169
JournalAstronomy and Astrophysics
Publication statusPublished - 11 Sep 2018


  • Dust, extinction
  • Galaxies: abundances
  • Galaxies: individual: ESO 580-49
  • Galaxies: star formation
  • Gamma-ray burst: general
  • Gamma-ray burst: individual: 111005A


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