OTN Ep #010: Young Stellar Object EC 53, and Gravitational Wave Source GW170817

In this podcast, we first share report  of a new brightening of a YSO – that’s a “Young Stellar Object” – known as EC 53 in Serpens Main, in ATel 11614.  A YSO is a star which is still in the process of formation, undergoing gravitational collapse, just as nuclear burning is attempting to get started in the core.  This YSO, EC 53, is observed brightening approximately every year and a half; and this report provides the first detection of a new episode of brightening. Then, in the second half of the podcast, we share the first reported detection of fading in the X-ray band of GW170817. GS170817 is a gravitational wave source, thought due to the inspiral of a binary pair of neutron stars, which was detected to have collapsed together, on the date indicated by its name.  Since that event, over 260 days ago, The source has been observed to continually brighten in the X-rays, as the hot remnant expanded larger and larger. From ATel 11618, we share the first report of the X-rays fading, indicating that at long last, the cooling of the remnant is overcoming its physical expansion, and the source will likely now fade, slowly, into nothingness.

After the show, we invite you to examine the results even further at our website; and join the discussion online at Twitter using #OutThereNow.

In this podcast:

  • ATEL 11614  Catching the Next Burst: the periodic young stellar object EC 53 in Serpens Main is sharply brightening at 850 microns and at near-IR H-band and K-band.
  • ATEL 11618  Chandra observations of GW170817 260 days since merger: first statistically significant evidence for an X-ray decay.

Special thanks to Doug Johnstone, A. Hajela, and Mona Eltahawy.



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