GRB 080514B is the first gamma ray burst (GRB), since the time of EGRET, for which individual photons of energy above several tens of MeV have been detected with a pair-conversion tracker telescope. This burst was discovered with the Italian AGILE gamma-ray satellite. The GRB was localized by a cooperation between AGILE and the interplanetary network (IPN). The gamma-ray imager (GRID) estimate of the position, obtained before the SuperAGILE-IPN localization, is found to be consistent with the burst position. The hard X-ray emission observed by SuperAGILE lasted about 7 s, while there is evidence that the emission above 30 MeV extends for a longer duration (at least 13 s). Similar behavior has been seen from a few other GRBs observed with EGRET. However, during the brightest phases, the latter measurements were affected by instrumental dead time effects, resulting in only lower limits to the burst intensity. Thanks to the small dead time of the AGILE/GRID we could assess that in the case of GRB 080514B the gamma-ray to X-ray flux ratio changes significantly between the prompt and extended emission phase.
- Gamma rays: bursts