Astronomers using a battery of space and ground-based telescopes to study the aftermath of a gamma ray burst known as GRB 150101B say the explosion may have been triggered by the catastrophic merger of two neutron stars.

The gamma ray burst shares “remarkable similarities” with a similar merger detected in 2017 by gravitational waves.

GRB 150101B was discovered in 2015 by NASA’s Fermi Gamma-ray Space Telescope. Follow-up observations by Chandra, Hubble, the Discovery Channel Telescope, the Neil Gehrels Swift Observatory and others show GRB 150101B and its younger cousin, known as GW170817, may represent a new class of erupting bodies that turn on and off in X-rays.

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