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  1. ABSTRACT

    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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  2. Context. We present observations of ZTF20aatqesi (SN 2020faa). This Type II supernova (SN) displays a luminous light curve (LC) that started to rebrighten from an initial decline. We investigate this in relation to the famous SN iPTF14hls, which received a great deal of attention and multiple interpretations in the literature, but whose nature and source of energy still remain unknown. Aims. We demonstrate the great similarity between SN 2020faa and iPTF14hls during the first 6 months, and use this comparison to forecast the evolution of SN 2020faa and to reflect on the less well observed early evolution of iPTF14hls. Methods. We present and analyse our observational data, consisting mainly of optical LCs from the Zwicky Transient Facility in the gri bands and of a sequence of optical spectra. We construct colour curves and a bolometric lc, and we compare ejecta-velocity and black-body radius evolutions for the two supernovae (SNe) and for more typical Type II SNe. Results. The LCs show a great similarity with those of iPTF14hls over the first 6 months in luminosity, timescale, and colour. In addition, the spectral evolution of SN 2020faa is that of a Type II SN, although it probes earlier epochs than those availablemore »for iPTF14hls. Conclusions. The similar LC behaviour is suggestive of SN 2020faa being a new iPTF14hls. We present these observations now to advocate follow-up observations, since most of the more striking evolution of SN iPTF14hls came later, with LC undulations and a spectacular longevity. On the other hand, for SN 2020faa we have better constraints on the explosion epoch than we had for iPTF14hls, and we have been able to spectroscopically monitor it from earlier phases than was done for the more famous sibling.« 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 the 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-interactionmore »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