Modeling the Prompt Optical Emission of GRB 180325A: The Evolution of a Spike from the Optical to Gamma Rays


The transition from prompt to afterglow emission is one of the most exciting and least understood phases in gamma-ray bursts (GRBs). Correlations among optical, X-ray, and gamma-ray emission in GRBs have been explored, to attempt to answer whether the earliest optical emission comes from internal and/or external shocks. We present optical photometric observations of GRB 180325A collected with the TAROT and RATIR ground-based telescopes. These observations show two strong optical flashes with separate peaks at ensuremath∼50 and ensuremath∼120 s, followed by a temporally extended optical emission. We also present X-rays and gamma-ray observations of GRB 180325A, detected by the Burst Alert Telescope and X-ray Telescope, on the Neil Gehrels Swift observatory, which both observed a narrow flash at ensuremath∼80 s. We show that the prompt gamma-ray and X-ray early emission shares similar temporal and spectral features consistent with internal dissipation within the relativistic outflow (e.g., by internal shocks or magnetic reconnection), while the early optical flashes are likely generated by the reverse shock that decelerates the ejecta as it sweeps up the external medium.