Illustration by Benito Marcote, presented during his conference talk, depicting one of the MAGIC telescopes and the signal from a Fast Radio Burst detected during the observations.
A peek inside the conference "20 MAGIC Years" in La Palma, Spain (4-7 Oct). JIVE support scientist, Benito Marcote, gave an insightful talk on Fast Radio Bursts and the successful synergy of the European VLBI Network (EVN) and the MAGIC telescopes in unveiling the regions where they occur.
The conference marked the 20th anniversary of the MAGIC telescopes, renowned for observing the most energetic form of light, which is emitted as gamma rays. The Canarian island of La Palma is home to the two MAGIC Telescopes, located at the island's highest point, 2,200 meters above sea level.
It began on October 4th, with an introductory presentation by David Paneque, senior scientist at Max Planck Institute for Physics. It ended on April 7th, with an exclusive tour of La Palma's newborn volcano.
On the first day of the event, amid a series of engaging talks, Benito Marcote, support scientist at JIVE and a member of the MAGIC collaboration from 2012 to 2015, delivered a presentation titled "Fast Radio Bursts and Magnetars". Marcote discussed the exciting findings from his study on Fast Radio Bursts, which were obtained through observations using Very Long Baseline Interferometry (VLBI) in conjunction with the MAGIC telescopes.
Marcote's research underscores the pivotal role of the EVN in the study of Fast Radio Bursts—enigmatic and incredibly bright flashes of radio light that last for just a thousandth of a second, originating from cosmological distances that are enormously distant. In particular, "it is thanks to the EVN that we have precisely localised these bursts in the sky, revealing the regions where they occur", Marcote emphasises.
During two other sessions of the conference on the same day, Giancarlo Ghirlanda and Marcello Giroletti, researchers at the INAF - Istituto Nazionale di Astrofisica, delivered comprehensive presentations on the synergy of MAGIC, EVN, and multiwavelength observations and the significance of this synergy for our understanding of gamma-ray bursts and novae.
Although no optical and/or gamma-ray burst emission has been detected so far, we keep looking for it", says Marcote. "Our search relies on several models, which predict that Fast Radio Bursts should also be seen at other wavelengths, like optical and/or gamma rays. This is why a few years ago we started joint observations with MAGIC and radio telescopes, including the EVN, to detect the bursts simultaneously. Until we achieve this, we set constraints on the theoretical models that aim to explain how Fast Bursts are produced".