skip to main content

Title: Broad-emission-line dominated hydrogen-rich luminous supernovae

Hydrogen-rich Type II supernovae (SNe II) are the most frequently observed class of core-collapse SNe (CCSNe). However, most studies that analyse large samples of SNe II lack events with absolute peak magnitudes brighter than −18.5 mag at rest-frame optical wavelengths. Thanks to modern surveys, the detected number of such luminous SNe II (LSNe II) is growing. There exist several mechanisms that could produce luminous SNe II. The most popular propose either the presence of a central engine (a magnetar gradually spinning down or a black hole accreting fallback material) or the interaction of supernova ejecta with circumstellar material (CSM) that turns kinetic energy into radiation energy. In this work, we study the light curves and spectral series of a small sample of six LSNe II that show peculiarities in their H α profile, to attempt to understand the underlying powering mechanism. We favour an interaction scenario with CSM that is not dense enough to be optically thick to electron scattering on large scales – thus, no narrow emission lines are observed. This conclusion is based on the observed light curve (higher luminosity, fast decline, blue colours) and spectral features (lack of persistent narrow lines, broad H α emission, lack of H α absorption, weak, or non-existent metal lines) together with comparison to other luminous events available in the literature. We add to the growing evidence that transients powered by ejecta–CSM interaction do not necessarily display persistent narrow emission lines.

more » « less
Award ID(s):
1911225 1911151
Author(s) / Creator(s):
; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; more » ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; « less
Publisher / Repository:
Oxford University Press
Date Published:
Journal Name:
Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society
Page Range / eLocation ID:
p. 5315-5340
Medium: X
Sponsoring Org:
National Science Foundation
More Like this
  1. Abstract

    We present photometric and spectroscopic observations of the nearby (D≈ 28 Mpc) interacting supernova (SN) 2019esa, discovered within hours of explosion and serendipitously observed by the Transiting Exoplanet Survey Satellite (TESS). Early, high-cadence light curves from both TESS and the DLT40 survey tightly constrain the time of explosion, and show a 30 day rise to maximum light followed by a near-constant linear decline in luminosity. Optical spectroscopy over the first 40 days revealed a reddened object with narrow Balmer emission lines seen in Type IIn SNe. The slow rise to maximum in the optical light curve combined with the lack of broad Hαemission suggest the presence of very optically thick and close circumstellar material (CSM) that quickly decelerated the SN ejecta. This CSM was likely created from a massive star progenitor with anṀ∼ 0.2Myr−1lost in a previous eruptive episode 3–4 yr before eruption, similar to giant eruptions of luminous blue variable stars. At late times, strong intermediate-width Caii, Fei, and Feiilines are seen in the optical spectra, identical to those seen in the superluminous interacting SN 2006gy. The strong CSM interaction masks the underlying explosion mechanism in SN 2019esa, but the combination of the luminosity, strength of the Hαlines, and mass-loss rate of the progenitor seem to be inconsistent with a Type Ia CSM model and instead point to a core-collapse origin.

    more » « less

    We present a sample of 14 hydrogen-rich superluminous supernovae (SLSNe II) from the Zwicky Transient Facility (ZTF) between 2018 and 2020. We include all classified SLSNe with peaks Mg < −20 mag with observed broad but not narrow Balmer emission, corresponding to roughly 20 per cent of all hydrogen-rich SLSNe in ZTF phase I. We examine the light curves and spectra of SLSNe II and attempt to constrain their power source using light-curve models. The brightest events are photometrically and spectroscopically similar to the prototypical SN 2008es, while others are found spectroscopically more reminiscent of non-superluminous SNe II, especially SNe II-L. 56Ni decay as the primary power source is ruled out. Light-curve models generally cannot distinguish between circumstellar interaction (CSI) and a magnetar central engine, but an excess of ultraviolet (UV) emission signifying CSI is seen in most of the SNe with UV data, at a wide range of photometric properties. Simultaneously, the broad H α profiles of the brightest SLSNe II can be explained through electron scattering in a symmetric circumstellar medium (CSM). In other SLSNe II without narrow lines, the CSM may be confined and wholly overrun by the ejecta. CSI, possibly involving mass lost in recent eruptions, is implied to be the dominant power source in most SLSNe II, and the diversity in properties is likely the result of different mass loss histories. Based on their radiated energy, an additional power source may be required for the brightest SLSNe II, however – possibly a central engine combined with CSI.

    more » « less

    We present a series of ground-based photometry and spectroscopy of the superluminous Type IIn supernova (SN) ASASSN-15ua, which shows evidence for strong interaction with pre-existing dense circumstellar material (CSM). Our observations constrain the speed, mass-loss rate, and extent of the progenitor wind shortly before explosion. A narrow P Cygni absorption component reveals a progenitor wind speed of ∼100 km s−1. As observed in previous SNe IIn, the intermediate-width H α emission became more asymmetric and blueshifted over time, suggesting either asymmetric CSM, an asymmetric explosion, or increasing selective extinction from dust within the post-shock shell or SN ejecta. Based on the CSM radius and speed, we find that the progenitor suffered extreme eruptive mass-loss with a rate of 0.1–1 M⊙ yr−1 during the ∼12 yr immediately before the death of the star that imparted ∼ 1048 erg of kinetic energy to the CSM. Integrating its V-band light curve over the first 170 d after discovery, we find that ASASSN-15ua radiated at least 3 × 1050 erg in visual light alone, giving a lower limit to the total radiated energy that may have approached 1051 erg. ASASSN-15ua exhibits many similarities to two well-studied superluminous SNe IIn: SN 2006tf and SN 2010jl. Based on a detailed comparison of these three, we find that ASASSN-15ua falls in between these two events in a wide variety of observed properties and derived physical parameters, illustrating a continuum of behaviour across superluminous SNe IIn.

    more » « less
  4. Abstract

    We present observations of a peculiar hydrogen- and helium-poor stripped-envelope (SE) supernova (SN) 2020wnt, primarily in the optical and near-infrared (near-IR). Its peak absolute bolometric magnitude of −20.9 mag (Lbol, peak= (6.8 ± 0.3) × 1043erg s−1) and a rise time of 69 days are reminiscent of hydrogen-poor superluminous SNe (SLSNe I), luminous transients potentially powered by spinning-down magnetars. Before the main peak, there is a brief peak lasting <10 days post explosion, likely caused by interaction with circumstellar medium (CSM) ejected ∼years before the SN explosion. The optical spectra near peak lack a hot continuum and Oiiabsorptions, which are signs of heating from a central engine; they quantitatively resemble those of radioactivity-powered hydrogen/helium-poor Type Ic SESNe. At ∼1 yr after peak, nebular spectra reveal a blue pseudo-continuum and narrow Oirecombination lines associated with magnetar heating. Radio observations rule out strong CSM interactions as the dominant energy source at +266 days post peak. Near-IR observations at +200–300 days reveal carbon monoxide and dust formation, which causes a dramatic optical light-curve dip. Pair-instability explosion models predict slow light curve and spectral features incompatible with observations. SN 2020wnt is best explained as a magnetar-powered core-collapse explosion of a 28Mpre-SN star. The explosion kinetic energy is significantly larger than the magnetar energy at peak, effectively concealing the magnetar-heated inner ejecta until well after peak. SN 2020wnt falls into a continuum between normal SNe Ic and SLSNe I, and demonstrates that optical spectra at peak alone cannot rule out the presence of a central engine.

    more » « less
  5. Abstract

    We present UV and/or optical observations and models of SN 2023ixf, a type II supernova (SN) located in Messier 101 at 6.9 Mpc. Early time (flash) spectroscopy of SN 2023ixf, obtained primarily at Lick Observatory, reveals emission lines of Hi, Hei/ii, Civ, and Niii/iv/vwith a narrow core and broad, symmetric wings arising from the photoionization of dense, close-in circumstellar material (CSM) located around the progenitor star prior to shock breakout. These electron-scattering broadened line profiles persist for ∼8 days with respect to first light, at which time Doppler broadened the features from the fastest SN ejecta form, suggesting a reduction in CSM density atr≳ 1015cm. The early time light curve of SN 2023ixf shows peak absolute magnitudes (e.g.,Mu= −18.6 mag,Mg= −18.4 mag) that are ≳2 mag brighter than typical type II SNe, this photometric boost also being consistent with the shock power supplied from CSM interaction. Comparison of SN 2023ixf to a grid of light-curve and multiepoch spectral models from the non-LTE radiative transfer codeCMFGENand the radiation-hydrodynamics codeHERACLESsuggests dense, solar-metallicity CSM confined tor= (0.5–1) × 1015cm, and a progenitor mass-loss rate ofṀ=102Myr−1. For the assumed progenitor wind velocity ofvw= 50 km s−1, this corresponds to enhanced mass loss (i.e.,superwindphase) during the last ∼3–6 yr before explosion.

    more » « less