The Challenge of Gamma Ray Burst Observations

Science  24 Jul 1998:
Vol. 281, Issue 5376, pp. 525-526
DOI: 10.1126/science.281.5376.525

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Gamma-ray bursts, energetic emissions of high-energy photons of astrophysical origin, have posed a continuing puzzle for astronomers. As Leonard discusses in his Perspective, recent observational results are confirming that the gamma-ray bursts originate well outside our galaxy but, at the same time, offer new challenges to theorists trying to explain the mechanism of emission. Leonard discusses work recently presented at the 192nd meeting of the American Astronomical Society (7 to 12 June 1998).