We consider fireball models where the ejecta have a range of bulk Lorentz factors, so that the inner (lower Γ) parts may carry most of the mass, or even most of the energy. The outer shock and contact discontinuity decelerate as the fireball sweeps up external matter. This deceleration allows slower ejecta to catch up, replenishing and reenergizing the reverse shock and boosting the momentum in the blast wave. In consequence, the energy available to power the afterglow may substantially exceed that of the burst itself. Such models allow a wide range of possibilities for the afterglow evolution, even in the case of spherically symmetric expansion.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Astronomy and Astrophysics
- Space and Planetary Science