Below I list some highlights of recent news that is connected in
some way with me or my work.
- More Gravitational Waves detected. The LIGO and VIRGO team have announced
the second detection of gravitational waves, again from a binary black hole merger.
As before, Swift
responded quickly and we were able to cover more sky this time.
My paper on the follow up, which includes
a discussion of plans for the future, is on arXiv.
- Gravitational Waves detected!. The first direct
detection of gravitational waves was reported by the LIGO and VIRGO teams.
The waves arose when two black holes coalesced.
Swift responded to the GW detection and quickly observed part of the
sky localisation, and issued a
press release. I wrote a paper on the subject. In fact, due to late
notification, I wrote this thing in about 24 hours, which is a record (for me) but something I hope never to repeat!
- 1000 GRBs and counting: Swift has detected its 1,000th GRB!
the Bad Astronomy blog
on this is well worth a read.
- Swift X-ray point source catalogue available. The
1SXPS catalogue of >150,000 point
sources is now available. The paper describing it (Evans et al. 2014)
is available on arXiv.
- Swift discovers a powerful, nearby GRB which you can
read about on the BBC
- Live GRB Catalogue online - The GRB analysis contained in
XRT GRB Catalogue is now automatically carried out for each new GRB (once it is 24 hours old) and
the results are posted online.
- New Swift website launched - After a lot of work, our new website
has been released. As well as a new design, the underlying system is much more efficient, so the on-demand jobs
and GRB processing should run more quickly
- Burst Analyser released - My recent project, the Swift Burst Analyser is now
online. A paper describing it is on ADS: Evans et al.,
2010, MNRAS, 402, 46
- Swift_Phil on Twitter - I am providing a Twitter feed on a "professional" basis,
that is in my role as a Swift scientist. I'm Swift_Phil on Twitter
and also have a supporting website.
- GK Per paper in outburst - GK Per has gone back into outburst. Various observing campaigns are watching
it. See ATEL 2466 for more.
- GK Per paper published - My paper on the 2006 Dwarf Nova outburs of
GK Perseii has been published: MNRAS, 399, 1167.
- New p-distribution paper - Peter Curran has led a paper along with myself,
Mat Page, Max de Pasquale and Alexander van der Horst, investigating whether
we can tie down the distribution of p —
the election energy distribution index — using the late-time
XRT spectra. The answer is yes! For more details, see
- XRT catalogue published - It's taken long enough, but finally the paper
has made it through the typesetting etc stage and into the journal. MNRAS, 397, 1177
- GK Per paper accepeted - My latest lead-author paper,
presenting and discussing multi-wavelength data on the 2006 Dwarf Nova outburst
of GK Per, has been accepted by MNRAS. It's on arXiv as 0907.1407.
- Most distance object ever observed seen by Swift! - GRB
090423 has a spectrscopic redshift somewhere around 7.6 or 8.2 (see GCN Circ.
9216, 9129), making it the most
distant object with a spectoscopic redshift. To see how that fits in with
other GRBs, see my Cumulative plot of GRB redshifts
for Swift GRBs.
- XRT autoprocessing and catalogue paper accepted - data on VO - The arXiv entry
has been updated, and the data are now available through the VO: ivo://uk.ac.le.star.swift/dsa_grb_aux/SwiftXRTGRBCat
- Up to second in Google! - OK, OK, so it's a bit egotistical, but if you do a Google for
"Phil Evans" this site is now the second hit. Just got to get rid of that wedding photographer....
- Swift to feature in the Science museum. In July,
the Science museum are launching a new exhibition to celebrate the
400th anniversary of the telescope. Swift is due to feature there, along
with photos and interviews with Kim and myself.
- XRT autoprocessing and catalogue paper on arXiv. This paper (arXiv 0812.3662) - representing
most of my work since joining the Swift project - details the algorithm
used to create XRT
spectra, the changes to the enhanced positions since
al. (2007), and a few updates to the light curves since Evans et
al. (2007), as well as introducing the XRT products generator (below). It also presents
a catalogue of results produced from these tools for the 318 GRBs detected by XRT up to GRB 080723B.
- Swift XRT product generator online. You can now create XRT products
(enhanced position, light curve, spectrum) for any object detected by the
- Time-slice GRB spectra. The XRT GRB spectra have a new
feature: you can now create time-resolved spectra. Follow the link on the
results page for the GRB in question.
- XRT GRB products web site launched. A number of times recently I've thought
that there should be a single page per burst linking the various XRFT automatic products, rather
than having three separate indices. So, now, there is.
- IGR J08408 paper in press. Earlier this year (2008) Swift triggered
on a series of outbursts from the Supergiant Fast X-ray Transient (SFXT) known as
IGR J08408-4503. Our paper led by
Pat Romano, has been accepted for publication in MNRAS.
- A day in the life video. Brady Haran, a BBC journalist
recently followed Rhaana and me
to produce a "day in the life" video, partly aimed at encouraging
young people into science. The video is online here.
- Swift sees most distant burst. On 2008 Sep 13th, at 7:07am BST,
Swift detected a GRB at a redshift of 6.7 (see GCN Circ.
the NASA press release.) It was about 120,000,000,000,000,000,000,000 km away, the energy had been
travelling for 12,826,000,000 years ago.
- Brightest GRB seen by Swift. On 2008 March 19th, Swift
detected a GRB. This was half way across the universe, but bright enough
to be seen by the naked eye! (It peaked at mag 5). Read about it
in this Nature article.