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  1. ABSTRACT Stripped-envelope supernovae (SE-SNe) show a wide variety of photometric and spectroscopic properties. This is due to the different potential formation channels and the stripping mechanism that allows for a large diversity within the progenitors outer envelope compositions. Here, the photometric and spectroscopic observations of SN 2020cpg covering ∼130 d from the explosion date are presented. SN 2020cpg (z = 0.037) is a bright SE-SNe with the B-band peaking at MB = −17.75 ± 0.39 mag and a maximum pseudo-bolometric luminosity of Lmax = 6.03 ± 0.01 × 1042 erg s−1. Spectroscopically, SN 2020cpg displays a weak high- and low-velocity H α feature during the photospheric phase of its evolution, suggesting that it containedmore »a detached hydrogen envelope prior to explosion. From comparisons with spectral models, the mass of hydrogen within the outer envelope was constrained to be ∼0.1 M⊙. From the pseudo-bolometric light curve of SN 2020cpg a 56Ni mass of MNi ∼ 0.27 ± 0.08 M⊙ was determined using an Arnett-like model. The ejecta mass and kinetic energy of SN 2020cpg were determined using an alternative method that compares the light curve of SN 2020cpg and several modelled SE-SNe, resulting in an ejecta mass of Mejc ∼ 5.5 ± 2.0 M⊙ and a kinetic energy of EK ∼ 9.0 ± 3.0 × 1051 erg. The ejected mass indicates a progenitor mass of 18−25 M⊙. The use of the comparative light curve method provides an alternative process to the commonly used Arnett-like model to determine the physical properties of SE-SNe.« less
  2. ABSTRACT We present the photometric and spectroscopic evolution of supernova (SN) 2019cad during the first ∼100 d from explosion. Based on the light-curve morphology, we find that SN 2019cad resembles the double-peaked Type Ib/c SN 2005bf and the Type Ic PTF11mnb. Unlike those two objects, SN 2019cad also shows the initial peak in the redder bands. Inspection of the g-band light curve indicates the initial peak is reached in ∼8 d, while the r-band peak occurred ∼15 d post-explosion. A second and more prominent peak is reached in all bands at ∼45 d past explosion, followed by a fast decline from ∼60 d. During the first 30 d, themore »spectra of SN 2019cad show the typical features of a Type Ic SN, however, after 40 d, a blue continuum with prominent lines of Si ii λ6355 and C ii λ6580 is observed again. Comparing the bolometric light curve to hydrodynamical models, we find that SN 2019cad is consistent with a pre-SN mass of 11 M⊙, and an explosion energy of 3.5 × 1051 erg. The light-curve morphology can be reproduced either by a double-peaked 56Ni distribution with an external component of 0.041 M⊙, and an internal component of 0.3 M⊙ or a double-peaked 56Ni distribution plus magnetar model (P ∼ 11 ms and B ∼ 26 × 1014 G). If SN 2019cad were to suffer from significant host reddening (which cannot be ruled out), the 56Ni model would require extreme values, while the magnetar model would still be feasible.« less
  3. ABSTRACT We present and discuss the optical spectrophotometric observations of the nearby (z = 0.087) Type I superluminous supernova (SLSN I) SN 2017gci, whose peak K-corrected absolute magnitude reaches Mg = −21.5 mag. Its photometric and spectroscopic evolution includes features of both slow- and of fast-evolving SLSN I, thus favoring a continuum distribution between the two SLSN-I subclasses. In particular, similarly to other SLSNe I, the multiband light curves (LCs) of SN 2017gci show two re-brightenings at about 103 and 142 d after the maximum light. Interestingly, this broadly agrees with a broad emission feature emerging around 6520 Å after ∼51 d from themore »maximum light, which is followed by a sharp knee in the LC. If we interpret this feature as Hα, this could support the fact that the bumps are the signature of late interactions of the ejecta with a (hydrogen-rich) circumstellar material. Then we fitted magnetar- and CSM-interaction-powered synthetic LCs on to the bolometric one of SN 2017gci. In the magnetar case, the fit suggests a polar magnetic field Bp ≃ 6 × 1014 G, an initial period of the magnetar Pinitial ≃ 2.8 ms, an ejecta mass $M_{\rm ejecta}\simeq 9\, \mathrm{M}_\odot $ and an ejecta opacity $\kappa \simeq 0.08\, \mathrm{cm}^{2}\, \rm{g}^{-1}$. A CSM-interaction scenario would imply a CSM mass $\simeq 5\, \mathrm{M}_\odot $ and an ejecta mass $\simeq 12\, \mathrm{M}_\odot $. Finally, the nebular spectrum of phase  + 187 d was modeled, deriving a mass of $\sim 10\, {\rm M}_\odot$ for the ejecta. Our models suggest that either a magnetar or CSM interaction might be the power sources for SN 2017gci and that its progenitor was a massive ($40\, {\rm M}_\odot$) star.« less
  4. We present the results of our monitoring campaigns of the luminous red novae (LRNe) AT 2020hat in NGC 5068 and AT 2020kog in NGC 6106. The two objects were imaged (and detected) before their discovery by routine survey operations. They show a general trend of slow luminosity rise, lasting at least a few months. The subsequent major LRN outbursts were extensively followed in photometry and spectroscopy. The light curves present an initial short-duration peak, followed by a redder plateau phase. AT 2020kog is a moderately luminous event peaking at ∼7 × 10 40 erg s −1 , while AT 2020hat is almostmore »one order of magnitude fainter than AT 2020kog, although it is still more luminous than V838 Mon. In analogy with other LRNe, the spectra of AT 2020kog change significantly with time. They resemble those of type IIn supernovae at early phases, then they become similar to those of K-type stars during the plateau, and to M-type stars at very late phases. In contrast, AT 2020hat already shows a redder continuum at early epochs, and its spectrum shows the late appearance of molecular bands. A moderate-resolution spectrum of AT 2020hat taken at +37 d after maximum shows a forest of narrow P Cygni lines of metals with velocities of 180 km s −1 , along with an H α emission with a full-width at half-maximum velocity of 250 km s −1 . For AT 2020hat, a robust constraint on its quiescent progenitor is provided by archival images of the Hubble Space Telescope. The progenitor is clearly detected as a mid-K type star, with an absolute magnitude of M F 606 W  = −3.33 ± 0.09 mag and a colour of F 606 W  −  F 814 W  = 1.14 ± 0.05 mag, which are inconsistent with the expectations from a massive star that could later produce a core-collapse supernova. Although quite peculiar, the two objects nicely match the progenitor versus light curve absolute magnitude correlations discussed in the literature.« less
  5. ABSTRACT We present the results of a multiwavelength follow-up campaign for the luminous nuclear transient Gaia16aax, which was first identified in 2016 January. The transient is spatially consistent with the nucleus of an active galaxy at z = 0.25, hosting a black hole of mass ${\sim }6\times 10^8\, \mathrm{M}_\odot$. The nucleus brightened by more than 1 mag in the Gaia G band over a time-scale of less than 1 yr, before fading back to its pre-outburst state over the following 3 yr. The optical spectra of the source show broad Balmer lines similar to the ones present in a pre-outburst spectrum. Duringmore »the outburst, the H α and H β emission lines develop a secondary peak. We also report on the discovery of two transients with similar light-curve evolution and spectra: Gaia16aka and Gaia16ajq. We consider possible scenarios to explain the observed outbursts. We exclude that the transient event could be caused by a microlensing event, variable dust absorption or a tidal encounter between a neutron star and a stellar mass black hole in the accretion disc. We consider variability in the accretion flow in the inner part of the disc, or a tidal disruption event of a star ${\ge } 1 \, \mathrm{M}_{\odot }$ by a rapidly spinning supermassive black hole as the most plausible scenarios. We note that the similarity between the light curves of the three Gaia transients may be a function of the Gaia alerts selection criteria.« less
  6. ABSTRACT We present the data and analysis of SN 2018gjx, an unusual low-luminosity transient with three distinct spectroscopic phases. Phase I shows a hot blue spectrum with signatures of ionized circumstellar material (CSM), Phase II has the appearance of broad SN features, consistent with those seen in a Type IIb supernova at maximum light, and Phase III is that of a supernova interacting with helium-rich CSM, similar to a Type Ibn supernova. This event provides an apparently rare opportunity to view the inner workings of an interacting supernova. The observed properties can be explained by the explosion of a star inmore »an aspherical CSM. The initial light is emitted from an extended CSM (∼4000 R⊙), which ionizes the exterior unshocked material. Some days after, the SN photosphere envelops this region, leading to the appearance of a SN IIb. Over time, the photosphere recedes in velocity space, revealing interaction between the supernova ejecta and the CSM that partially obscures the supernova nebular phase. Modelling of the initial spectrum reveals a surface composition consistent with compact H-deficient Wolf–Rayet and Luminous Blue Variable (LBV) stars. Such configurations may not be unusual, with SNe IIb being known to have signs of interaction so at least some SNe IIb and SNe Ibn may be the same phenomena viewed from different angles, or possibly with differing CSM configurations.« less
  7. ABSTRACT We present results from spectroscopic observations of AT 2018hyz, a transient discovered by the All-Sky Automated Survey for Supernova survey at an absolute magnitude of MV ∼ −20.2 mag, in the nucleus of a quiescent galaxy with strong Balmer absorption lines. AT 2018hyz shows a blue spectral continuum and broad emission lines, consistent with previous TDE candidates. High cadence follow-up spectra show broad Balmer lines and He i in early spectra, with He ii making an appearance after ∼70–100 d. The Balmer lines evolve from a smooth broad profile, through a boxy, asymmetric double-peaked phase consistent with accretion disc emission, and back to smoothmore »at late times. The Balmer lines are unlike typical active galactic nucleus in that they show a flat Balmer decrement (Hα/Hβ ∼ 1.5), suggesting the lines are collisionally excited rather than being produced via photoionization. The flat Balmer decrement together with the complex profiles suggests that the emission lines originate in a disc chromosphere, analogous to those seen in cataclysmic variables. The low optical depth of material due to a possible partial disruption may be what allows us to observe these double-peaked, collisionally excited lines. The late appearance of He ii may be due to an expanding photosphere or outflow, or late-time shocks in debris collisions.« less
  8. ABSTRACT We present observations of the unusually luminous Type II supernova (SN) 2016gsd. With a peak absolute magnitude of V = −19.95 ± 0.08, this object is one of the brightest Type II SNe, and lies in the gap of magnitudes between the majority of Type II SNe and the superluminous SNe. Its light curve shows little evidence of the expected drop from the optically thick phase to the radioactively powered tail. The velocities derived from the absorption in H α are also unusually high with the blue edge tracing the fastest moving gas initially at 20 000 km s−1, and then declining approximately linearly to 15 000 km s−1 overmore »∼100 d. The dwarf host galaxy of the SN indicates a low-metallicity progenitor which may also contribute to the weakness of the metal lines in its spectra. We examine SN 2016gsd with reference to similarly luminous, linear Type II SNe such as SNe 1979C and 1998S, and discuss the interpretation of its observational characteristics. We compare the observations with a model produced by the jekyll code and find that a massive star with a depleted and inflated hydrogen envelope struggles to reproduce the high luminosity and extreme linearity of SN 2016gsd. Instead, we suggest that the influence of interaction between the SN ejecta and circumstellar material can explain the majority of the observed properties of the SN. The high velocities and strong H α absorption present throughout the evolution of the SN may imply a circumstellar medium configured in an asymmetric geometry.« less
  9. ABSTRACT We present the photometric and spectroscopic evolution of the Type II supernova (SN II) SN 2017ivv (also known as ASASSN-17qp). Located in an extremely faint galaxy (Mr = −10.3 mag), SN 2017ivv shows an unprecedented evolution during the 2 yr of observations. At early times, the light curve shows a fast rise (∼6−8 d) to a peak of ${\it M}^{\rm max}_{g}= -17.84$ mag, followed by a very rapid decline of 7.94 ± 0.48 mag per 100 d in the V band. The extensive photometric coverage at late phases shows that the radioactive tail has two slopes, one steeper than that expected from the decay of 56Co (between 100more »and 350 d), and another slower (after 450 d), probably produced by an additional energy source. From the bolometric light curve, we estimated that the amount of ejected 56Ni is ∼0.059 ± 0.003 M⊙. The nebular spectra of SN 2017ivv show a remarkable transformation that allows the evolution to be split into three phases: (1) Hα strong phase (<200 d); (2) Hα weak phase (between 200 and 350 d); and (3) Hα broad phase (>500 d). We find that the nebular analysis favours a binary progenitor and an asymmetric explosion. Finally, comparing the nebular spectra of SN 2017ivv to models suggests a progenitor with a zero-age main-sequence mass of 15–17 M⊙.« less