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Pastorello, A; Smartt, SJ; Botticella, MT; Maguire, K; Fraser, M; Smith, K; Kotak, R; Magill, L; Valenti, S; Young, DR; Gezari, S; Bresolin, F; Kudritzki, R; Howell, DA; Rest, A; Metcalfe, N; Mattila, S; Kankare, E; Huang, KY; Urata, Y; Burgett, WS; Chambers, KC; Dombeck, T; Flewelling, H; Grav, T; Heasley, JN; Hodapp, KW; Kaiser, N; Luppino, GA; Lupton, RH; Magnier, EA; Monet, DG; Morgan, JS; Onaka, PM; Price, PA; Rhoads, PH; Siegmund, WA; Stubbs, CW; Sweeney, WE; Tonry, JL; Wainscoat, RJ; Waterson, MF; Waters, C; Wynn-Williams, CG



A Pastorello

SJ Smartt

MT Botticella

K Maguire

M Fraser

K Smith

R Kotak

L Magill

S Valenti

DR Young

S Gezari

F Bresolin

R Kudritzki

DA Howell

A Rest

S Mattila

E Kankare

KY Huang

Y Urata

WS Burgett

KC Chambers

T Dombeck

H Flewelling

T Grav

JN Heasley

KW Hodapp

N Kaiser

GA Luppino

RH Lupton

EA Magnier

DG Monet

JS Morgan

PM Onaka

PA Price

PH Rhoads

WA Siegmund

CW Stubbs

WE Sweeney

JL Tonry

RJ Wainscoat

MF Waterson

C Waters

CG Wynn-Williams


Recent searches by unbiased, wide-field surveys have uncovered a group of extremely luminous optical transients. The initial discoveries of SN 2005ap by the Texas Supernova Search and SCP-06F6 in a deep Hubble pencil beam survey were followed by the Palomar Transient Factory confirmation of host redshifts for other similar transients. The transients share the common properties of high optical luminosities (peak magnitudes ~−21 to −23), blue colors, and a lack of H or He spectral features. The physical mechanism that produces the luminosity is uncertain, with suggestions ranging from jet-driven explosion to pulsational pair instability. Here, we report the most detailed photometric and spectral coverage of an ultra-bright transient (SN 2010gx) detected in the Pan-STARRS 1 sky survey. In common with other transients in this family, early-time spectra show a blue continuum and prominent broad absorption lines of O ii. However, about 25 days after discovery, the spectra developed type Ic supernova features, showing the characteristic broad Fe ii and Si ii absorption lines. Detailed, post-maximum follow-up may show that all SN 2005ap and SCP-06F6 type transients are linked to supernovae Ic. This poses problems in understanding the physics of the explosions: there is no indication from late-time photometry that the luminosity is powered by 56Ni, the broad light curves suggest very large ejected masses, and the slow spectral evolution is quite different from typical Ic timescales. The nature of the progenitor stars and the origin of the luminosity are intriguing and open questions.


Pastorello, A., Smartt, S., Botticella, M., Maguire, K., Fraser, M., Smith, K., …Wynn-Williams, C. (2010). ULTRA-BRIGHT OPTICAL TRANSIENTS ARE LINKED WITH TYPE Ic SUPERNOVAE. Astrophysical Journal Letters, 724(1), L16-L21.

Journal Article Type Article
Publication Date Nov 20, 2010
Deposit Date Dec 16, 2010
Publicly Available Date Feb 21, 2014
Journal Astrophysical Journal Letters
Print ISSN 2041-8205
Electronic ISSN 2041-8213
Publisher American Astronomical Society
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 724
Issue 1
Pages L16-L21


Published Journal Article (619 Kb)

Copyright Statement
© 2010. The American Astronomical Society. All rights reserved.

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