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  1. Context. With a rapidly rising number of transients detected in astronomy, classification methods based on machine learning are increasingly being employed. Their goals are typically to obtain a definitive classification of transients, and for good performance they usually require the presence of a large set of observations. However, well-designed, targeted models can reach their classification goals with fewer computing resources. Aims. The aim of this study is to assist in the observational astronomy task of deciding whether a newly detected transient warrants follow-up observations. Methods. This paper presents SNGuess, a model designed to find young extragalactic nearby transients with high purity. SNGuess works with a set of features that can be efficiently calculated from astronomical alert data. Some of these features are static and associated with the alert metadata, while others must be calculated from the photometric observations contained in the alert. Most of the features are simple enough to be obtained or to be calculated already at the early stages in the lifetime of a transient after its detection. We calculate these features for a set of labeled public alert data obtained over a time span of 15 months from the Zwicky Transient Facility (ZTF). The core model ofmore »SNGuess consists of an ensemble of decision trees, which are trained via gradient boosting. Results. Approximately 88% of the candidates suggested by SNGuess from a set of alerts from ZTF spanning from April 2020 to August 2021 were found to be true relevant supernovae (SNe). For alerts with bright detections, this number ranges between 92% and 98%. Since April 2020, transients identified by SNGuess as potential young SNe in the ZTF alert stream are being published to the Transient Name Server (TNS) under the AMPEL_ZTF_NEW group identifier. SNGuess scores for any transient observed by ZTF can be accessed via a web service . The source code of SNGuess is publicly available . Conclusions. SNGuess is a lightweight, portable, and easily re-trainable model that can effectively suggest transients for follow-up. These properties make it a useful tool for optimizing follow-up observation strategies and for assisting humans in the process of selecting candidate transients.« less
  2. Context. SN 2020qlb (ZTF20abobpcb) is a hydrogen-poor superluminous supernova (SLSN-I) that is among the most luminous (maximum M g  = −22.25 mag) and that has one of the longest rise times (77 days from explosion to maximum). We estimate the total radiated energy to be > 2.1 × 10 51 erg. SN 2020qlb has a well-sampled light curve that exhibits clear near and post peak undulations, a phenomenon seen in other SLSNe, whose physical origin is still unknown. Aims. We discuss the potential power source of this immense explosion as well as the mechanisms behind its observed light curve undulations. Methods. We analyze photospheric spectra and compare them to other SLSNe-I. We constructed the bolometric light curve using photometry from a large data set of observations from the Zwicky Transient Facility (ZTF), Liverpool Telescope (LT), and Neil Gehrels Swift Observatory and compare it with radioactive, circumstellar interaction and magnetar models. Model residuals and light curve polynomial fit residuals are analyzed to estimate the undulation timescale and amplitude. We also determine host galaxy properties based on imaging and spectroscopy data, including a detection of the [O III] λ 4363, auroral line, allowing for a direct metallicity measurement. Results. We rule out the Arnett 56more »Ni decay model for SN 2020qlb’s light curve due to unphysical parameter results. Our most favored power source is the magnetic dipole spin-down energy deposition of a magnetar. Two to three near peak oscillations, intriguingly similar to those of SN 2015bn, were found in the magnetar model residuals with a timescale of 32 ± 6 days and an amplitude of 6% of peak luminosity. We rule out centrally located undulation sources due to timescale considerations; and we favor the result of ejecta interactions with circumstellar material (CSM) density fluctuations as the source of the undulations.« less
    Free, publicly-accessible full text available February 1, 2024
  3. Abstract During the Zwicky Transient Facility (ZTF) Phase I operations, 78 hydrogen-poor superluminous supernovae (SLSNe-I) were discovered in less than 3 yr, constituting the largest sample from a single survey. This paper (Paper I) presents the data, including the optical/UV light curves and classification spectra, while Paper II in this series will focus on the detailed analysis of the light curves and modeling. Our photometry is primarily taken by ZTF in the g , r , and i bands, and with additional data from other ground-based facilities and Swift. The events of our sample cover a redshift range of z = 0.06 − 0.67, with a median and 1 σ error (16% and 84% percentiles) of z med = 0.265 − 0.135 + 0.143 . The peak luminosity covers −22.8 mag ≤ M g ,peak ≤ −19.8 mag, with a median value of − 21.48 − 0.61 + 1.13 mag. The light curves evolve slowly with a mean rest-frame rise time of t rise = 41.9 ± 17.8 days. The luminosity and timescale distributions suggest that low-luminosity SLSNe-I with a peak luminosity ∼−20 mag or extremely fast-rising events (<10 days) exist, but are rare. We confirm previous findings that slowlymore »rising SLSNe-I also tend to fade slowly. The rest-frame color and temperature evolution show large scatters, suggesting that the SLSN-I population may have diverse spectral energy distributions. The peak rest-frame color shows a moderate correlation with the peak absolute magnitude, i.e., brighter SLSNe-I tend to have bluer colors. With optical and UV photometry, we construct the bolometric luminosity and derive a bolometric correction relation that is generally applicable for converting g , r -band photometry to the bolometric luminosity for SLSNe-I.« less
    Free, publicly-accessible full text available January 1, 2024

    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 inmore »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.

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  5. Context. Supernovae (SNe) Type Ibn are rapidly evolving and bright ( M R, peak  ∼ −19) transients interacting with He-rich circumstellar material (CSM). SN 2018bcc, detected by the ZTF shortly after explosion, provides the best constraints on the shape of the rising light curve (LC) of a fast Type Ibn. Aims. We used the high-quality data set of SN 2018bcc to study observational signatures of the class. Additionally, the powering mechanism of SN 2018bcc offers insights into the debated progenitor connection of Type Ibn SNe. Methods. We compared well-constrained LC properties obtained from empirical models with the literature. We fit the pseudo-bolometric LC with semi-analytical models powered by radioactive decay and CSM interaction. Finally, we modeled the line profiles and emissivity of the prominent He  I lines, in order to study the formation of P-Cygni profiles and to estimate CSM properties. Results. SN 2018bcc had a rise time to peak of the LC of 5.6 −0.1 +0.2 days in the restframe with a rising shape power-law index close to 2, and seems to be a typical rapidly evolving Type Ibn SN. The spectrum lacked signatures of SN-like ejecta and was dominated by over 15 He emission features at 20 days past peak,more »alongside Ca and Mg, all with V FWHM ∼ 2000 km s −1 . The luminous and rapidly evolving LC could be powered by CSM interaction but not by the decay of radioactive 56 Ni. Modeling of the He  I lines indicated a dense and optically thick CSM that can explain the P-Cygni profiles. Conclusions. Like other rapidly evolving Type Ibn SNe, SN 2018bcc is a luminous transient with a rapid rise to peak powered by shock interaction inside a dense and He-rich CSM. Its spectra do not support the existence of two Type Ibn spectral classes. We also note the remarkable observational match to pulsational pair instability SN models.« less
  6. Abstract We present the full panchromatic afterglow light-curve data of GW170817, including new radio data as well as archival optical and X-ray data, between 0.5 and 940 days post-merger. By compiling all archival data and reprocessing a subset of it, we have evaluated the impact of differences in data processing or flux determination methods used by different groups and attempted to mitigate these differences to provide a more uniform data set. Simple power-law fits to the uniform afterglow light curve indicate a t 0.86±0.04 rise, a t −1.92±0.12 decline, and a peak occurring at 155 ± 4 days. The afterglow is optically thin throughout its evolution, consistent with a single spectral index (−0.584 ± 0.002) across all epochs. This gives a precise and updated estimate of the electron power-law index, p = 2.168 ± 0.004. By studying the diffuse X-ray emission from the host galaxy, we place a conservative upper limit on the hot ionized interstellar medium density, <0.01 cm −3 , consistent with previous afterglow studies. Using the late-time afterglow data we rule out any long-lived neutron star remnant having a magnetic field strength between 10 10.4 and 10 16 G. Our fits to the afterglow data using anmore »analytical model that includes Very Long Baseline Interferometry proper motion from Mooley et al., and a structured jet model that ignores the proper motion, indicates that the proper-motion measurement needs to be considered when seeking an accurate estimate of the viewing angle.« less
  7. In this paper, we discuss the outcomes of the follow-up campaign of SN 2018ijp, discovered as part of the Zwicky Transient Facility survey for optical transients. Its first spectrum shows similarities to broad-lined Type Ic supernovae around maximum light, whereas later spectra display strong signatures of interaction between rapidly expanding ejecta and a dense H-rich circumstellar medium, coinciding with a second peak in the photometric evolution of the transient. This evolution, along with the results of modeling of the first light-curve peak, suggests a scenario where a stripped star exploded within a dense circumstellar medium. The two main phases in the evolution of the transient could be interpreted as a first phase dominated by radioactive decays, and a later interaction-dominated phase where the ejecta collide with a pre-existing shell. We therefore discuss SN 2018jp within the context of a massive star depleted of its outer layers exploding within a dense H-rich circumstellar medium.