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Exploring the Potential Diversity of Early Type Ia Supernova Light Curves

Piro, Anthony L. and Morozova, Viktoriya S. (2016) Exploring the Potential Diversity of Early Type Ia Supernova Light Curves. Astrophysical Journal, 826 (1). Art. No. 96. ISSN 0004-637X. doi:10.3847/0004-637X/826/1/96.

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During the first several days after explosion, Type Ia supernova light curves probe the outer layers of the exploding star, and therefore provide important clues for identifying their progenitors. We investigate how both the shallow ^(56)Ni distribution and the presence of circumstellar material shape these early light curves. This is performed using a series of numerical experiments with parameterized properties for systematic exploration. Although not all of the considered models may be realized in nature (and indeed there are arguments why some of them should not occur), the spirit of this work is to provide a broader exploration of the diversity of possibilities. We find that shallower 56Ni leads to steeper, bluer light curves. Differences in the shape of the rise can introduce errors in estimating the explosion time, and thus impact efforts to infer upper limits on the progenitor or companion radius from a lack of observed shock cooling emission. Circumstellar material can lead to significant luminosity during the first few days, but its presence can be difficult to identify depending on the degree of nickel mixing. In some cases, the hot emission of circumstellar material may even lead to a signature similar to an interaction with a companion, and thus in the future additional diagnostics should be gathered for properly assessing early light curves.

Item Type:Article
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URLURL TypeDescription Paper
Piro, Anthony L.0000-0001-6806-0673
Additional Information:© 2016 The American Astronomical Society. Received 2015 December 9; revised 2016 April 13; accepted 2016 May 11; published 2016 July 25. We thank the anonymous referee, Robert Firth, Ryan Foley, Benjamin Shappee, Jeffrey Silverman, and Mark Sullivan for helpful feedback, Ken Shen for providing the bare 1.25 M⊙ WD model from MESA that was used for this work, and Ruediger Pakmor and Josiah Schwab, as well as Ken Shen again, for sharing their density profiles shown in Figure 9. V.S.M. is supported in part by the National Science Foundation under award No. AST-1205732 and AST-1212170, by Caltech, and by the Sherman Fairchild Foundation. Some computations were performed on the Caltech compute cluster Zwicky (NSF MRI-R2 award No. PHY-0960291).
Funding AgencyGrant Number
Sherman Fairchild FoundationUNSPECIFIED
Subject Keywords:hydrodynamics – radiative transfer – supernovae: general – white dwarfs
Issue or Number:1
Record Number:CaltechAUTHORS:20160916-154650855
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Official Citation:Anthony L. Piro and Viktoriya S. Morozova 2016 ApJ 826 96
Usage Policy:No commercial reproduction, distribution, display or performance rights in this work are provided.
ID Code:70410
Deposited By: Tony Diaz
Deposited On:20 Sep 2016 02:02
Last Modified:11 Nov 2021 04:28

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