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GCN Circular 35602

Subject
GRB 240123A: Swift detection of a burst with a possible optical counterpart
Date
2024-01-23T11:34:56Z (a month ago)
From
Antonino D'Ai' at IASF-PA <antonino.dai@inaf.it>
Via
email

A. D'Ai (INAF-IASFPA), E. Ambrosi (INAF-IASFPA),
V. D'Elia (SSDC & INAF-OAR), J.D. Gropp (PSU), J. A. Kennea (PSU),
A. Y. Lien (U Tampa), A. Melandri (INAF-OAR),
K. L. Page (U Leicester), T. M. Parsotan (GSFC/UMBC/CRESSTII) and
B. Sbarufatti (INAF-OAB) report on behalf of the Neil Gehrels Swift
Observatory Team:

At 11:05:46 UT, the Swift Burst Alert Telescope (BAT) triggered and
located GRB 240123A (trigger=1210276).  Swift slewed immediately to the burst. 
The BAT on-board calculated location is 
RA, Dec 199.319, +60.632 which is 
   RA(J2000) = 13h 17m 16s
   Dec(J2000) = +60d 37' 53"
with an uncertainty of 3 arcmin (radius, 90% containment, including 
systematic uncertainty).  The BAT light curve showed a complex
structure with a duration of about 25 sec.  The peak count rate
was ~500 counts/sec (15-350 keV), at ~5 sec after the trigger. 

The XRT began observing the field at 11:08:08.6 UT, 141.8 seconds after
the BAT trigger. Using promptly downlinked data we find a bright,
fading, uncatalogued X-ray source located at RA, Dec 199.34797,
60.61894 which is equivalent to:
   RA(J2000)  = 13h 17m 23.51s
   Dec(J2000) = +60d 37' 08.2"
with an uncertainty of 3.8 arcseconds (radius, 90% containment). This
location is 69 arcseconds from the BAT onboard position, within the BAT
error circle. This position may be improved as more data are received;
the latest position is available at https://www.swift.ac.uk/sper. 

A power-law fit to a spectrum formed from promptly downlinked event
data gives a column density in excess of the Galactic value (1.45 x
10^20 cm^-2, Willingale et al. 2013), with an excess column of 2.7
(+2.69/-2.33) x 10^21 cm^-2 (90% confidence). 

The initial flux in the 2.5 s image was 7.30e-10 erg cm^-2 s^-1 (0.2-10
keV). 

UVOT took a finding chart exposure of 150 seconds with the White filter
starting 151 seconds after the BAT trigger. There is a candidate afterglow in
the rapidly available 2.7'x2.7' sub-image at
  RA(J2000)  =	13:17:23.25 = 199.3468
  DEC(J2000) = +60:37:04.4  = 60.6179
with a 90%-confidence error radius of about 0.2 arc sec. This position is 4.3
arc sec. from the center of the XRT error circle. The estimated magnitude is
19.9 with a 1-sigma error of about 0.2. No correction has been made for the
expected extinction. 

Burst Advocate for this burst is A. D'Ai (antonino.dai AT inaf.it). 
Please contact the BA by email if you require additional information
regarding Swift followup of this burst. In extremely urgent cases, after
trying the Burst Advocate, you can contact the Swift PI by phone (see
Swift TOO web site for information: http://www.swift.psu.edu/)


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