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Search for precursor eruptions among Type IIb supernovae

Strotjohann, Nora L. and Ofek, Eran O. and Gal-Yam, Avishay and Sullivan, Mark and Kulkarni, Shrinivas R. and Shaviv, Nir J. and Fremling, Christoffer and Kasliwal, Mansi M. and Nugent, Peter E. and Cao, Yi and Arcavi, Iair and Sollerman, Jesper and Filippenko, Alexei V. and Yaron, Ofer and Laher, Russ and Surace, Jason (2015) Search for precursor eruptions among Type IIb supernovae. Astrophysical Journal, 811 (2). Art. No. 117. ISSN 0004-637X.

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The progenitor stars of several Type IIb supernovae (SNe) show indications of extended hydrogen envelopes. These envelopes might be the outcome of luminous energetic pre-explosion events, so-called precursor eruptions. We use the Palomar Transient Factory (PTF) pre-explosion observations of a sample of 27 nearby SNe IIb to look for such precursors during the final years prior to the SN explosion. No precursors are found when combining the observations in 15-day bins, and we calculate the absolute-magnitude-dependent upper limit on the precursor rate. At the 90% confidence level, SNe IIb have on average <0.86 precursors as bright as an absolute R-band magnitude of −14 in the final 3.5 years before the explosion and <0.56 events over the final year. In contrast, precursors among SNe IIn have a ≳ 5 times higher rate. The kinetic energy required to unbind a low-mass stellar envelope is comparable to the radiated energy of a few-weeks-long precursor that would be detectable for the closest SNe in our sample. Therefore, mass ejections, if they are common in such SNe, are radiatively inefficient or have durations longer than months. Indeed, when using 60-day bins, a faint precursor candidate is detected prior to SN 2012cs (~2% false-alarm probability). We also report the detection of the progenitor of SN 2011dh that does not show detectable variability over the final two years before the explosion. The suggested progenitor of SN 2012P is still present, and hence is likely a compact star cluster or an unrelated object.

Item Type:Article
Related URLs:
URLURL TypeDescription Paper
Strotjohann, Nora L.0000-0002-4667-6730
Ofek, Eran O.0000-0002-6786-8774
Gal-Yam, Avishay0000-0002-3653-5598
Sullivan, Mark0000-0001-9053-4820
Kulkarni, Shrinivas R.0000-0001-5390-8563
Shaviv, Nir J.0000-0003-3894-8422
Fremling, Christoffer0000-0002-4223-103X
Kasliwal, Mansi M.0000-0002-5619-4938
Nugent, Peter E.0000-0002-3389-0586
Cao, Yi0000-0002-8036-8491
Arcavi, Iair0000-0001-7090-4898
Sollerman, Jesper0000-0003-1546-6615
Filippenko, Alexei V.0000-0003-3460-0103
Yaron, Ofer0000-0002-0301-8017
Laher, Russ0000-0003-2451-5482
Surace, Jason0000-0001-7291-0087
Additional Information:© 2015. The American Astronomical Society. Received 2015 June 16; accepted 2015 August 18; published 2015 September 28. This paper is based on observations obtained with the Samuel Oschin Telescope as part of the PTF, a scientific collaboration between the California Institute of Technology, Columbia University, Las Cumbres Observatory, the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, the National Energy Research Scientific Computing Center, the University of Oxford, and the Weizmann Institute of Science. We are grateful for excellent staff assistance at Palomar and Lick Observatories. E.O.O. is incumbent of the Arye Dissentshik career development chair and is grateful for support by grants from the Willner Family Leadership Institute Ilan Gluzman (Secaucus, NJ), Israeli Ministry of Science, Israel Science Foundation, Minerva and the I-CORE Program of the Planning and Budgeting Committee and The Israel Science Foundation. A.G.-Y. is supported by the EU/FP7 via ERC grant No. 307260, the Quantum universe I-Core program by the Israeli Committee for planning and budgeting, and the ISF, Minerva and ISF grants, WIS-UK "making connections" and the Kimmel and ARCHES awards. M.S. acknowledges support from the Royal Society and EU/FP7- ERC grant No. [615929]. N.J.S. thanks the IBM Einstein Fellowship support by the Institute for Advanced Study, Princeton. A.V.F's research was made possible by National Science Foundation grant AST-1211916, the TABASGO Foundation, and the Christopher R. Redlich Fund. The Lick Observatory Supernova Search was conducted with the Katzman Automatic Imaging Telescope, made possible by donations from Sun Microsystems, Inc., the Hewlett-Packard Company, AutoScope Corporation, Lick Observatory, the NSF, the University of California, the Sylvia & Jim Katzman Foundation, and the TABASGO Foundation. Research at Lick Observatory is partially supported by a generous gift from Google.
Group:Palomar Transient Factory, Infrared Processing and Analysis Center (IPAC)
Funding AgencyGrant Number
Willner Family Leadership Institute Ilan Gluzman (Secaucus NJ)UNSPECIFIED
Ministry of Science (israel)UNSPECIFIED
Israel Science FoundationUNSPECIFIED
European Research Council (ERC)307260
Quantum Universe I-Core programUNSPECIFIED
Israeli Committee for Planning and BudgetingUNSPECIFIED
European Research Council (ERC)615929
IBM Einstein FellowshipUNSPECIFIED
Institute for Advanced StudyUNSPECIFIED
Christopher R. Redlich FundUNSPECIFIED
Sun Microsystems, Inc.UNSPECIFIED
Hewlett-Packard CompanyUNSPECIFIED
Auto-Scope CorporationUNSPECIFIED
Lick ObservatoryUNSPECIFIED
University of CaliforniaUNSPECIFIED
Sylvia and Jim Katzman FoundationUNSPECIFIED
Subject Keywords:stars: mass-loss; supernovae: general; supernovae: individual (SN2011dh, SN2012P, SN2012cs, SN2013bb)
Issue or Number:2
Record Number:CaltechAUTHORS:20151119-145042560
Persistent URL:
Official Citation:Nora L. Strotjohann et al 2015 ApJ 811 117
Usage Policy:No commercial reproduction, distribution, display or performance rights in this work are provided.
ID Code:62266
Deposited By: Ruth Sustaita
Deposited On:20 Nov 2015 00:03
Last Modified:10 Dec 2020 22:31

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