Probing quantum gravity using photons from a flare of the active galactic nucleus Markarian 501 observed by the MAGIC telescope



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Antoranz Canales, Pedro and Barrio Uña, Juan Abel and Contreras González, José Luis and Fonseca González, Mª Victoria and Miranda Pantoja, José Miguel and Nieto, Daniel (2008) Probing quantum gravity using photons from a flare of the active galactic nucleus Markarian 501 observed by the MAGIC telescope. Physics Letters B, 668 (4). pp. 253-257. ISSN 0370-2693

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We analyze the timing of photons observed by the MAGIC telescope during a flare of the active galactic nucleus Mkn 501 for a possible correlation with energy, as suggested by some models of quantum gravity (QG), which predict a vacuum refractive index similar or equal to 1 + (E/M-QGn)(n), n = 1, 2. Parametrizing the delay between gamma-rays of different energies as Delta t = +/-tau E-1 or Delta t = +/-tau E-q(2), we find tau(1) = (0.030 +/- 0.012) s/GeV at the 2.5-sigma level, and tau(q) = (3.71 +/- 2.57) x 10(-6) s/GeV2, respectively. We use these results to establish lower limits M-QG1 > 0.21 X 10(18) GeV and M-QG2 > 0.26 x 10(11) GeV at the 95% C.L. Monte Carlo studies confirm the MAGIC sensitivity to propagation effects at these levels. Thermal plasma effects in the source are negligible, but we cannot exclude the importance of some other source effect. (C) 2008 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

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© Elsevier Science. The MAGIC Collaboration thanks the IAC for the excellent working conditions at the Observatorio del Roque de los Muchachos in La Palma and gratefully acknowledges the support of the German BMBF and MPG, the Italian INFN and the Spanish CICYT. This work was also supported by ETH Research Grant TH 34/04 3 and the Polish MNiI Grant 1P03D01028. The work of J.E. and N.E.M. was partially supported by the European Union through the Marie Curie Research and Training Network UniverseNet MRTN-CT-2006-035863, and that of D.V.N. by DOE grant DE-FG02-95ER40917.

Uncontrolled Keywords:Gamma-Ray Bursts, String Theory, Light, Scale, Emission, Limits, Speed, Model, Time.
Subjects:Sciences > Physics > Electronics
Sciences > Physics > Electricity
Sciences > Physics > Nuclear physics
ID Code:23072
Deposited On:11 Oct 2013 09:25
Last Modified:31 Dec 2020 00:01

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