Posts Tagged type ia

Recent Postings from type ia

Origin of the Galactic 511 keV emission from positrons produced in irregular supernovae

Gamma ray emission of 511 keV lines arising from electron-positron annihilation has been detected from the Galaxy since the 70s. Spatially resolved observations using the INTEGRAL satellite have shown its full sky distribution to be strongly concentrated in the Galactic bulge, with a smaller contribution from the disk, unlike the situation in any other wavelength. The puzzling distribution of the positrons gave rise to various suggestions, including stellar nucleosynthesis in core-collapse (CC) and type Ia thermonuclear supernovae (SNe), accreting compact objects, and more "exotic" explanations of annihilation of dark-matter particles. However, such models encounter difficulties in reproducing the total Galactic 511 keV flux as well as its peculiar bulge-centered distribution. Theoretical models of SNe from thermonuclear Helium detonations on white dwarfs (WDs) were suggested as potential additional sources of positrons, contributing to the Galactic Gamma-ray emission. Here, we show that the recently discovered class of faint, calcium-rich type Ib SNe (with the prototype SN 2005E), thought to arise from such explosions, also called ".Ia" SNe, can explain both the 511 keV flux and its distribution, and can eliminate the need for non-astrophysical (e.g., dark matter annihilation) sources. Such SNe comprise a fraction of only ~2% of all SNe, but they currently inject hundreds of times more positrons (from $^{44}$Ti decay) to the ISM than injected by CC SNe, enough to reproduce the total Galactic 511 keV line emission. They exclusively explode in old environments, and their contribution to the 511 keV emission therefore follows the old (>10 Gyrs) Galactic stellar population, dominated by the bulge, thereby reproducing the observed large bulge-to-disk ratio.

Origin of the Galactic 511 keV emission from positrons produced in irregular supernovae [Replacement]

Gamma ray emission of 511 keV lines arising from electron-positron annihilation has been detected from the Galaxy since the 70s. Spatially resolved observations using the INTEGRAL satellite have shown its full sky distribution to be strongly concentrated in the Galactic bulge, with a smaller contribution from the disk, unlike the situation in any other wavelength. The puzzling distribution of the positrons gave rise to various suggestions, including stellar nucleosynthesis in core-collapse (CC) and type Ia thermonuclear supernovae (SNe), accreting compact objects, and more "exotic" explanations of annihilation of dark-matter particles. However, such models encounter difficulties in reproducing the total Galactic 511 keV flux as well as its peculiar bulge-centered distribution. Theoretical models of SNe from thermonuclear Helium detonations on white dwarfs (WDs) were suggested as potential additional sources of positrons, contributing to the Galactic Gamma-ray emission. Here, we show that the recently discovered class of faint, calcium-rich type Ib SNe (with the prototype SN 2005E), thought to arise from such explosions, also called ".Ia" SNe, can explain both the 511 keV flux and its distribution, and can eliminate the need for non-astrophysical (e.g., dark matter annihilation) sources. Such SNe comprise a fraction of only ~2% of all SNe, but they currently inject hundreds of times more positrons (from $^{44}$Ti decay) to the ISM than injected by CC SNe, enough to reproduce the total Galactic 511 keV line emission. They exclusively explode in old environments, and their contribution to the 511 keV emission therefore follows the old (>10 Gyrs) Galactic stellar population, dominated by the bulge, thereby reproducing the observed large bulge-to-disk ratio.

Comparing the Host Galaxies of Type Ia, Type II and Type Ibc Supernovae

We compare the host galaxies of 902 supernovae, including SNe Ia, SNe II and SNe Ibc, which are selected by cross-matching the Asiago Supernova Catalog with the SDSS Data Release 7. We further selected 213 galaxies by requiring the light fraction of spectral observations $>$15%, which could represent well the global properties of the galaxies. Among them, 135 galaxies appear on the Baldwin-Phillips-Terlevich diagram, which allows us to compare the hosts in terms of star-forming, AGNs (including composites, LINERs and Seyfert 2s) and "Absorp" (their related emission-lines are weak or non-existence) galaxies. The diagrams related to parameters D$_n$(4000), H$\delta_A$, stellar masses, SFRs and specific SFRs for the SNe hosts show that almost all SNe II and most of SNe Ibc occur in SF galaxies, which have a wide range of stellar mass and low D$_n$(4000). The SNe Ia hosts as SF galaxies follow similar trends. A significant fraction of SNe Ia occurs in AGNs and Absorp galaxies, which are massive and have high D$_n$(4000). The stellar population analysis from spectral synthesis fitting shows that the hosts of SNe II have a younger stellar population than hosts of SNe Ia. These results are compared with those of the 689 comparison galaxies where the SDSS fiber captures less than 15% of the total light. These comparison galaxies appear biased towards higher 12+log(O/H) ($\sim$0.1dex) at a given stellar mass. Therefore, we believe the aperture effect should be kept in mind when the properties of the hosts for different types of SNe are discussed.

Study of unconfirmed supernovae

We study the nature of 39 unconfirmed supernovae (SNe) from the sky area covered by Sloan Digital Sky Survey (SDSS) Data Release 8 (DR8), using available photometric and imaging data and intensive literature search. We confirm that 21 objects are real SNe, 2 are Galactic stars, 4 are probable SNe and 12 remain unconfirmed events. The probable types for 4 objects are suggested: 3 SNe are of probable type Ia and SN 1953H is probable type II SN. In addition, we identify the host galaxy of SN 1976N and correct the offsets/coordinates of SNe 1958E, 1972F, and 1976N.

Study of unconfirmed supernovae [Replacement]

We study the nature of 39 unconfirmed supernovae (SNe) from the sky area covered by Sloan Digital Sky Survey (SDSS) Data Release 8 (DR8), using available photometric and imaging data and intensive literature search. We confirm that 21 objects are real SNe, 2 are Galactic stars, 4 are probable SNe and 12 remain unconfirmed events. The probable types for 4 objects are suggested: 3 SNe are of probable type Ia and SN 1953H is probable type II SN. In addition, we identify the host galaxy of SN 1976N and correct the offsets/coordinates of SNe 1958E, 1972F, and 1976N.

Supernovae as probes of cosmic parameters: estimating the bias from under-dense lines of sight

Correctly interpreting observations of sources such as type Ia supernovae (SNe Ia) require knowledge of the power spectrum of matter on AU scales – which is very hard to model accurately. Because under-dense regions account for much of the volume of the universe, light from a typical source probes a mean density significantly below the cosmic mean. The relative sparsity of sources implies that there could be a significant bias when inferring distances of SNe Ia, and consequently a bias in cosmological parameter estimation. While the weak lensing approximation should in principle give the correct prediction for this, linear perturbation theory predicts an effectively infinite variance in the convergence for ultra-narrow beams. We attempt to quantify the effect typically under-dense lines of sight might have in parameter estimation by considering three alternative methods for estimating distances, in addition to the usual weak lensing approximation. We find in each case this not only increases the errors in the inferred density parameters, but also introduces a bias in the posterior value.

Supernovae as probes of cosmic parameters: estimating the bias from under-dense lines of sight [Cross-Listing]

Correctly interpreting observations of sources such as type Ia supernovae (SNe Ia) require knowledge of the power spectrum of matter on AU scales – which is very hard to model accurately. Because under-dense regions account for much of the volume of the universe, light from a typical source probes a mean density significantly below the cosmic mean. The relative sparsity of sources implies that there could be a significant bias when inferring distances of SNe Ia, and consequently a bias in cosmological parameter estimation. While the weak lensing approximation should in principle give the correct prediction for this, linear perturbation theory predicts an effectively infinite variance in the convergence for ultra-narrow beams. We attempt to quantify the effect typically under-dense lines of sight might have in parameter estimation by considering three alternative methods for estimating distances, in addition to the usual weak lensing approximation. We find in each case this not only increases the errors in the inferred density parameters, but also introduces a bias in the posterior value.

A reconnaissance of the possible donor stars to the Kepler supernova

The identity of Type Ia supernova progenitors remains a mystery, with various lines of evidence pointing towards either accretion from a non-degenerate companion, or the rapid merger of two degenerate stars leading to the thermonuclear destruction of a white dwarf. In this paper we spectroscopically scrutinize 24 of the brightest stars residing in the central 38" x 38" of the SN 1604 (Kepler) supernova remnant to search for a possible surviving companion star. We can rule out, with high certainty, a red giant companion star – a progenitor indicated by some models of the supernova remnant. Furthermore, we find no star that exhibits properties uniquely consistent with those expected of a donor star down to L>10Lsun. While the distribution of star properties towards the remnant are consistent with unrelated stars, we identify the most promising candidates for further astrometric and spectroscopic follow-up. Such a program would either discover the donor star, or place strong limits on progenitor systems to luminosities with L<<Lsun.

Constraining the primordial power spectrum from SNIa lensing dispersion

The (absence of detecting) lensing dispersion of Supernovae type Ia (SNIa) can be used as a novel and extremely efficient probe of cosmology. In this preliminary example we analyze its consequences for the primordial power spectrum. The main setback is the knowledge of the power spectrum in the non-linear regime, 1 Mpc^{-1} < k < 10^2-10^3 Mpc^{-1} at redshift of about unity. By using the lensing dispersion and conservative estimates in this regime of wavenumbers, we show how the current upper bound sigma_mu(z=1) < 0.12 on existing data gives strong indirect constraints on the primordial power spectrum. The probe extends our handle on the spectrum to a total of 12-15 inflation e-folds. These constraints are so strong that they are already ruling out a large portion of the parameter space allowed by PLANCK for running alpha = d n_s / d ln k and running of running beta = d^2 n_s / d ln k^2. The bounds follow a linear relation to a very good accuracy. A conservative bound disfavours any enhancement above the line beta(k_0)=0.032 – 0.41 alpha(k_0) and a realistic estimate disfavours any enhancement above the line beta(k_0)=0.019 – 0.45 alpha(k_0).

Hubble Space Telescope and Ground-Based Observations of the Type Iax Supernovae SN 2005hk and SN 2008A

We present Hubble Space Telescope (HST) and ground-based optical and near-infrared observations of SN 2005hk and SN 2008A, typical members of the Type Iax class of supernovae (SNe). These objects are peculiar cousins of normal Type Ia SNe, with SN 2002cx as the prototype. Here we focus on late-time observations, where these objects deviate most dramatically from normal SNe Ia. Instead of the dominant nebular emission lines that are observed in normal SNe Ia at late phases (and indeed, in SNe of all other types), spectra of SNe 2005hk and 2008A show lines of Fe II, Ca II, and Fe I more than a year past maximum light, along with narrow [Fe II] and [Ca II] emission. We use spectral features to constrain the temperature and density of the ejecta, and find high densities at late times, with n_e >~ 10^9 cm^-3. Such high densities should yield enhanced cooling of the ejecta, making these objects good candidates to observe the expected "infrared catastrophe," a generic feature of SN Ia models. However, our HST photometry of SN 2008A does not match the predictions of an infrared catastrophe. Moreover, our HST observations rule out a "pure deflagration" model for these peculiar SNe, showing no evidence for unburned material at late times. We derive an upper limit of 0.14 solar masses of low-density oxygen in SN 2008A nearly 600 days after maximum light, at odds with the pure deflagration prediction. We argue that the observed late-time line velocities (shifts and widths), of order ~500 km/s, imply the explosion did not fully disrupt the white dwarf. Failed deflagration explosion models, leaving behind a bound remnant, can match some of the observed properties of SNe Iax, but no published model is consistent with all of our observations of SNe 2005hk and 2008A.

Rapidly Fading Supernovae from Massive Star Explosions

Transient surveys have recently discovered a class of supernovae (SNe) with extremely rapidly declining light curves. These events are also often relatively faint, especially compared to Type Ia SNe. The common explanation for these events involves a weak explosion, producing a radioactive outflow with small ejected mass and kinetic energy (M ~ 0.1 Msun and E ~ 0.1 B, respectively), perhaps from the detonation of a helium shell on a white dwarf. We argue, in contrast, that these events may be Type Ib/c SNe with typical masses and energies (M ~ 3 Msun, E ~ 1 B), but which ejected very little radioactive material. In our picture, the light curve is powered by the diffusion of thermal energy deposited by the explosion shock wave, and the rapid evolution is due to recombination, which reduces the opacity and results in an "oxygen-plateau" light curve. Using a radiative transfer code, we generate synthetic spectra and light curves and demonstrate that this model can reasonably fit the observations of one event, SN 2010X. Similar models may explain the features of other rapidly evolving SNe such as SN 2002bj and SN 2005ek. SNe such as these require stripped-envelope progenitors with rather large radii (R ~ 20 Rsun), which may originate from a mass loss episode occurring just prior to explosion.

The Close Binary Properties of Massive Stars in the Milky Way and Low-Metallicity Magellanic Clouds

In order to understand the rates and properties of Type Ia and Type Ib/c supernovae, X-ray binaries, gravitational wave sources, and gamma ray bursts as a function of galactic environment and cosmic age, it is imperative that we measure how the close binary properties of O and B-type stars vary with metallicity. We have studied eclipsing binaries with early-B main-sequence primaries in three galaxies with different metallicities: the Large and Small Magellanic Clouds (LMC and SMC, respectively) as well as the Milky Way (MW). The observed fractions of early-B stars which exhibit deep eclipses 0.25 < Delta(m) (mag) < 0.65 and orbital periods 2 < P (days) < 20 in the MW, LMC, and SMC span a narrow range of (0.7-1.0)%, which is a model independent result. After correcting for geometrical selection effects and incompleteness toward low-mass companions, we find for early-B stars in all three environments: (1) a close binary fraction of (22+/-5)% across orbital periods 2 < P (days) < 20 and mass ratios q = M_2/M_1 > 0.1, (2) an intrinsic orbital period distribution slightly skewed toward shorter periods relative to a distribution that is uniform in log P, (3) a mass-ratio distribution weighted toward low-mass companions, and (4) a small, nearly negligible excess fraction of twins with q > 0.9. Our fitted parameters derived for the MW eclipsing binaries match the properties inferred from nearby, early-type spectroscopic binaries, which further validates our results. There are no statistically significant trends with metallicity, demonstrating that the close binary properties of massive stars do not vary across metallicities -0.7 < log(Z/Z_sun) < 0.0 beyond the measured uncertainties.

Chemistry of the Sagittarius Dwarf Galaxy: a Top-Light IMF, Outflows and the R-Process

From chemical abundance analysis of stars in the Sagittarius dwarf spheroidal galaxy (Sgr), we conclude that the alpha-element deficiencies cannot be due to the Type Ia supernova (SNIa) time-delay scenario of Tinsley (1979). Instead, the evidence points to low [alpha/Fe] ratios resulting from an initial mass function (IMF) deficient in the highest mass stars. The critical evidence is the 0.4 dex deficiency of [O/Fe], [Mg/Fe] and other hydrostatic elements, contrasting with the normal trend of r-process [Eu/Fe]r with [Fe/H]. Supporting evidence comes from the hydrostatic element (O, Mg, Na, Al, Cu) [X/Fe] ratios, which are inconsistent with iron added to the Milky Way (MW) disk trends. Also, the ratio of hydrostatic to explosive (Si, Ca, Ti) element abundances suggests a relatively top-light IMF. Abundance similarities with the LMC, Fornax and IC 1613, suggest that their alpha-element deficiencies also resulted from IMFs lacking the most massive SNII. For such a top-light IMF, the normal trend of r-process [Eu/Fe]r with [Fe/H], as seen in Sgr, indicates that massive Type II supernovae (>30Msun) cannot be major sources of r-process elements. High [La/Y] ratios, consistent with leaky-box chemical evolution, are confirmed but ~0.3 dex larger than theoretical AGB predictions. This may be due to the 13C pocket mass, or a difference between MW and Sgr AGB stars. Sgr has the lowest [Rb/Zr] ratios known, consistent with low-mass (~2Msun) AGB stars near [Fe/H]=-0.6, likely resulting from leaky-box chemical evolution. The [Cu/O] trend in Sgr and the MW suggest that Cu yields increase with both metallicity and stellar mass, as expected from Cu production by the weak s-process in massive stars. Finally, we present an updated hfs line list, an abundance analysis of Arcturus, and further develop our error analysis formalism.

Solar abundance of manganese: a case for the existence of near Chandrasekhar-mass Type Ia supernova progenitors

Context: Manganese is predominantly synthesised in Type Ia supernova (SN Ia) explosions. Owing to the entropy dependence of the Mn yield in explosive thermonuclear burning, SNe Ia involving near Chandrasekhar-mass white dwarfs (WDs) are predicted to produce Mn to Fe ratios significantly exceeding those of SN Ia explosions involving sub-Chandrasekhar mass primary WDs. Of all current supernova explosion models, only SN Ia models involving near-Chandrasekhar mass WDs produce [Mn/Fe] > 0.0. Aims: Using the specific yields for competing SN Ia scenarios, we aim to constrain the relative fractions of exploding near-Chandrasekhar mass to sub-Chandrasekhar mass primary WDs in the Galaxy. Methods: We extract the Mn yields from three-dimensional thermonuclear supernova simulations referring to different initial setups and progenitor channels. We then compute the chemical evolution of Mn in the Solar neighborhood, assuming SNe Ia are made up of different relative fractions of the considered explosion models. Results: We find that due to the entropy dependence of freeze-out yields from nuclear statistical equilibrium, [Mn/Fe] strongly depends on the mass of the exploding WD, with near-Chandraskher mass WDs producing substantially higher [Mn/Fe] than sub-Chandrasekhar mass WDs. Of all nucleosynthetic sources potentially influencing the chemical evolution of Mn, only explosion models involving the thermonuclear incineration of near-Chandrasekhar mass WDs predict solar or super-solar [Mn/Fe]. Consequently, we find in our chemical evolution calculations that the observed [Mn/Fe] in the Solar neighborhood at [Fe/H] > 0.0 cannot be reproduced without near-Chandrasekhar mass SN Ia primaries. Assuming that 50 per cent of all SNe Ia stem from explosive thermonuclear burning in near-Chandrasekhar mass WDs results in a good match to data.

Solar abundance of manganese: a case for the existence of near Chandrasekhar-mass Type Ia supernova progenitors [Replacement]

Context: Manganese is predominantly synthesised in Type Ia supernova (SN Ia) explosions. Owing to the entropy dependence of the Mn yield in explosive thermonuclear burning, SNe Ia involving near Chandrasekhar-mass white dwarfs (WDs) are predicted to produce Mn to Fe ratios significantly exceeding those of SN Ia explosions involving sub-Chandrasekhar mass primary WDs. Of all current supernova explosion models, only SN Ia models involving near-Chandrasekhar mass WDs produce [Mn/Fe] > 0.0. Aims: Using the specific yields for competing SN Ia scenarios, we aim to constrain the relative fractions of exploding near-Chandrasekhar mass to sub-Chandrasekhar mass primary WDs in the Galaxy. Methods: We extract the Mn yields from three-dimensional thermonuclear supernova simulations referring to different initial setups and progenitor channels. We then compute the chemical evolution of Mn in the Solar neighborhood, assuming SNe Ia are made up of different relative fractions of the considered explosion models. Results: We find that due to the entropy dependence of freeze-out yields from nuclear statistical equilibrium, [Mn/Fe] strongly depends on the mass of the exploding WD, with near-Chandraskher mass WDs producing substantially higher [Mn/Fe] than sub-Chandrasekhar mass WDs. Of all nucleosynthetic sources potentially influencing the chemical evolution of Mn, only explosion models involving the thermonuclear incineration of near-Chandrasekhar mass WDs predict solar or super-solar [Mn/Fe]. Consequently, we find in our chemical evolution calculations that the observed [Mn/Fe] in the Solar neighborhood at [Fe/H] > 0.0 cannot be reproduced without near-Chandrasekhar mass SN Ia primaries. Assuming that 50 per cent of all SNe Ia stem from explosive thermonuclear burning in near-Chandrasekhar mass WDs results in a good match to data.

The explosion of supernova 2011fe in the frame of the core-degenerate scenario

We argue that the properties of the Type Ia supernova (SN Ia) SN 2011fe can be best explained within the frame of the core-degenerate (CD) scenario. In the CD scenario a white dwarf (WD) merges with the core of an asymptotic giant branch (AGB) star and forms a rapidly rotating WD, with a mass close to and above the critical mass for explosion. Rapid rotation prevents immediate collapse and/or explosion. Spinning down over a time of 0-10 Gyr brings the WD to explosion. A very long delayed explosion to post-crystallization phase, which lasts for ~2 Gyr leads to the formation of a highly carbon-enriched outer layer. This can account for the carbon-rich composition of the fastest-moving ejecta of SN 2011fe. In reaching the conclusion that the CD scenario best explains the observed properties of SN 2011fe we consider both its specific properties, like a very compact exploding object and carbon rich composition of the fastest-moving ejecta, and the general properties of SNe Ia.

Nonthermal Radiation from Supernova Remnants: Effects of Magnetic Field Amplification and Particle Escape

We explore nonlinear effects of wave-particle interactions on the diffusive shock acceleration (DSA) process in Type Ia-like, SNR blast waves, by implementing phenomenological models for magnetic field amplification, Alfv’enic drift, and particle escape in time-dependent numerical simulations of nonlinear DSA. For typical SNR parameters the CR protons can be accelerated to PeV energies only if the region of amplified field ahead of the shock is extensive enough to contain the diffusion lengths of the particles of interest. Even with the help of Alfv’enic drift, it remains somewhat challenging to construct a nonlinear DSA model for SNRs in which order of 10 % of the supernova explosion energy is converted to the CR energy and the magnetic field is amplified by a factor of 10 or so in the shock precursor, while, at the same time, the energy spectrum of PeV protons is steeper than E^{-2}. To explore the influence of these physical effects on observed SNR emissions, we also compute resulting radio-to-gamma-ray spectra. Nonthermal emission spectra, especially in X-ray and gamma-ray bands,depend on the time dependent evolution of CR injection process, magnetic field amplification, and particle escape, as well as the shock dynamic evolution. This result comes from the fact that the high energy end of the CR spectrum is composed of the particles that are injected in the very early stages of blast wave evolution. Thus it is crucial to understand better the plasma wave-particle interactions associated with collisionless shocks in detail modeling of nonthermal radiation from SNRs.

The critical ingredients of SN Ia radiative-transfer modelling

We explore the physics of SN Ia light curves and spectra using the 1-D non-LTE time-dependent radiative-transfer code CMFGEN. Rather than adjusting ejecta properties to match observations, we select as input one "standard" 1-D Chandrasekhar-mass delayed-detonation hydrodynamical model, and then explore the sensitivity of radiation and gas properties of the ejecta on radiative-transfer modelling assumptions. The correct computation of SN Ia radiation is not exclusively a solution to an "opacity problem", characterized by the treatment of a large number of lines. We demonstrate that the key is to identify and treat important atomic processes consistently. This is not limited to treating line blanketing in full non-LTE. We show that including forbidden line transitions of metals, and in particular Co, is increasingly important for the temperature and ionization of the gas beyond maximum light. Non-thermal ionization and excitation also play a role, affecting the color evolution and the DM15 decline rate of our model. While impacting little the bolometric luminosity, a more complete treatment of decay routes leads to enhanced line blanketing, e.g., associated with 48Ti in the U and B bands. Overall, we find that SN Ia radiation properties are influenced in a complicated way by the atomic data we employ, so that obtaining converged results is a real challenge. Nonetheless, with our fully-fledged CMFGEN model, we obtain good agreement with the golden standard type Ia SN 2005cf in the optical and near-IR, from 5 to 60d after explosion, suggesting that assuming spherical symmetry is not detrimental to SN Ia radiative-transfer modeling at these times. Multi-D effects no doubt matter, but they are perhaps less important than accurately treating the non-LTE processes that are crucial to obtain reliable temperature and ionization structures.

Cosmological Parameter Estimation from SN Ia data: a Model-Independent Approach

We perform a model independent reconstruction of the cosmic expansion rate based on type Ia supernova data. Using the Union 2.1 data set, we show that the Hubble parameter behaviour allowed by the data without making any hypothesis about cosmological model or underlying gravity theory is consistent with a flat LCDM universe having H_0 = 70.43 +- 0.33 and Omega_m=0.297 +- 0.020, weakly dependent on the choice of initial scatter matrix. This is in closer agreement with the recently released Planck results (H_0 = 67.3 +- 1.2, Omega_m = 0.314 +- 0.020) than other standard analyses based on type Ia supernova data. We argue this might be an indication that, in order to tackle subtle deviations from the standard cosmological model present in type Ia supernova data, it is mandatory to go beyond parametrized approaches.

[OI] 6300,6364 in the nebular spectrum of a subluminous Type Ia supernova [Replacement]

In this letter a late-phase spectrum of SN 2010lp, a subluminous Type Ia supernova (SN Ia), is presented and analysed. As in 1991bg-like SNe Ia at comparable epochs, the spectrum is characterised by relatively broad [FeII] and [CaII] emission lines. However, instead of narrow [FeIII] and [CoIII] lines that dominate the emission from the innermost regions of 1991bg-like SNe, SN 2010lp shows [OI] 6300,6364 emission, usually associated with core-collapse SNe and never observed in a subluminous thermonuclear explosion before. The [OI] feature has a complex profile with two strong, narrow emission peaks. This suggests oxygen to be distributed in a non-spherical region close to the centre of the ejecta, severely challenging most thermonuclear explosion models discussed in the literature. We conclude that given these constraints violent mergers are presently the most promising scenario to explain SN 2010lp.

Independent constraints on local non-Gaussianity from the peculiar velocity and density fields

Primordial, non-Gaussian perturbations can generate scale-dependent bias in the galaxy distribution. This in turn will modify correlations between galaxy positions and peculiar velocities at late times, since peculiar velocities reflect the underlying matter distribution, whereas galaxies are a biased tracer of the same. We study this effect, and show that non-Gaussianity can be constrained by comparing the observed peculiar velocity field to a model velocity field reconstructed from the galaxy density field assuming linear bias. The amplitude of the spatial correlations in the residual map obtained after subtracting one velocity field from the other is directly proportional to the strength of the primordial non-Gaussianity. We construct the corresponding likelihood function use it to constrain the amplitude of the linear flow $\beta$ and the amplitude of local non-Gaussianity $f^{NL}_{local}$. Applying our method to two observational data sets, the Type-Ia supernovae (A1SN) and Spiral Field \textit{I}-band (SFI++) catalogues, we obtain constraints on the linear flow parameter consistent with the values derived previously assuming Gaussianity. The marginalised 1-D distribution of $\fnlabs$ does not show strong evidence for non-zero $f^{NL}_{local}$, and we set 95% upper limits $|f^{NL}_{local}|<51.4$ from A1SN and $|f^{NL}_{local}|<92.6$ from SFI++. These limits on $f^{NL}_{local}$ are as tight as any set by previous large-scale structure measurements. Our method can be applied to any survey with radial velocities and density field data, and provides an independent check of recent CMB constraints on $f^{NL}_{local}$, extending these to smaller spatial scales.

More Evidence for an Oscillation Superimposed on the Hubble Flow

In a recent investigation evidence was presented for a low-level sinusoidal oscillation superimposed on top of the Hubble flow. This oscillation was in V$_{CMB}$, in a sample of type Ia Supernovae sources with accurate distances, and it was found to have a wavelength close to 40 Mpc. It became easily visible after the removal of several previously identified discrete velocity components. Its amplitude like that of the Hubble velocity showed an increase with distance, as would be expected for a constant-amplitude space oscillation. Here we report that this oscillation is also present in distance clumping in these sources, with the same wavelength, but in phase quadrature. The discrete velocity components do not play a role in detecting the distance clumping wavelength. Assuming that time proceeds from high cosmological redshift to low, the blue-shifted velocity peaks, which represent the contraction stage of the velocity oscillation, then lead the density peaks. With the discrete velocity components removed we also find evidence for at least one other, weaker velocity oscillation. It is found to have a wavelength similar to one reported in density clumping by previous investigators. In those cases the source samples were much larger.

The structure and fate of white dwarf merger remnants

We present a large parameter study where we investigate the structure of white dwarf (WD) merger remnants after the dynamical phase. A wide range of WD masses and compositions are explored and we also probe the effect of different initial conditions. We investigated the degree of mixing between the WDs, the conditions for detonations as well as the amount of gas ejected. We find that systems with lower mass ratios have more total angular momentum and as a result more mass is flung out in a tidal tail. Nuclear burning can affect the amount of mass ejected. Many WD binaries that contain a helium-rich WD achieve the conditions to trigger a detonation. In contrast, for carbon-oxygen transferring systems only the most massive mergers with a total mass above ~2.1 solar masses detonate. Even systems with lower mass may detonate long after the merger if the remnant remains above the Chandrasekhar mass and carbon is ignited at the centre. Finally, our findings are discussed in the context of several possible observed astrophysical events and stellar systems, such as hot subdwarfs, R Coronae Borealis stars, single massive white dwarfs, supernovae of type Ia and other transient events. A large database containing 225 white dwarf merger remnants is made available via a dedicated web page.

Observational constraints on non-flat dynamical dark energy cosmological models

We constrain two non-flat time-evolving dark energy cosmological models by using Hubble parameter data, Type Ia supernova apparent magnitude measurements, and baryonic acoustic oscillation peak length scale observations. The inclusion of space curvature as a free parameter in the analysis results in a significant broadening of the allowed range of values of the parameter that governs the time evolution of the dark energy density in these models. While consistent with the "standard" spatially-flat $\Lambda$CDM cosmological model, these data are also consistent with a range of mildly non-flat, slowly time-varying dark energy models. After marginalizing over all other parameters, these data require the averaged magnitude of the curvature density parameter $|\Omega_{k0}| \lesssim 0.15$ at 1$\sigma$ confidence.

Measuring cosmic distances with galaxy clusters

In addition to cosmological tests based on the mass function and clustering of galaxy clusters, which probe the growth of cosmic structure, nature offers two independent ways of using clusters to measure cosmic distances. The first uses measurements of the X-ray emitting gas mass fraction, which is an approximately standard quantity, independent of mass and redshift, for the most massive clusters. The second uses combined millimeter (mm) and X-ray measurements of cluster pressure profiles. We review these methods, their current status and the prospects for improvements over the next decade. For the first technique, which currently provides comparable dark energy constraints to type Ia supernova studies, improvements of a factor of 6 or more should be readily achievable, together with tight constraints on the mean matter density that are largely independent of the cosmological model assumed. Realizing this potential will require a coordinated, multiwavelength approach, utilizing new cluster surveys, X-ray, optical and mm facilities, and a continued emphasis on improved hydrodynamical simulations.

A Subgrid-scale Model for Deflagration-to-Detonation Transitions in Type Ia Supernova Explosion Simulations - Numerical implementation

A promising model for normal Type Ia supernova (SN Ia) explosions are delayed detonations of Chandrasekhar-mass white dwarfs, in which the burning starts out as a subsonic deflagration and turns at a later phase of the explosion into a supersonic detonation. The mechanism of the underlying deflagration-to-detonation transition (DDT) is unknown in detail, but necessary conditions have been determined recently. The region of detonation initiation cannot be spatially resolved in multi-dimensional full-star simulations of the explosion. We develop a subgrid-scale (SGS) model for DDTs in thermonuclear supernova simulations that is consistent with the currently known constraints. The probability for a DDT to occur is calculated from the distribution of turbulent velocities measured on the grid scale in the vicinity of the flame and the fractal flame surface area that satisfies further physical constraints, such as fuel fraction and fuel density. The implementation of our DDT criterion provides a solid basis for simulations of thermonuclear supernova explosions in the delayed detonation scenario. It accounts for the currently known necessary conditions for the transition and avoids the inclusion of resolution-dependent quantities in the model. The functionality of our DDT criterion is demonstrated on the example of one three-dimensional thermonuclear supernova explosion simulation.

Modeling the interaction of thermonuclear supernova remnants with circumstellar structures: The case of Tycho's supernova remnant

The well-established Type Ia remnant of Tycho’s supernova (SN 1572) reveals discrepant ambient medium density estimates based on either the measured dynamics or on the X-ray emission properties. This discrepancy can potentially be solved by assuming that the supernova remnant (SNR) shock initially moved through a stellar wind bubble, but is currently evolving in the uniform interstellar medium with a relatively low density. We investigate this scenario by combining hydrodynamical simulations of the wind-loss phase and the supernova remnant evolution with a coupled X-ray emission model, which includes non-equilibrium ionization. For the explosion models we use the well-known W7 deflagration model and the delayed detonation model that was previously shown to provide good fits to the X-ray emission of Tycho’s SNR. Our simulations confirm that a uniform ambient density cannot simultaneously reproduce the dynamical and X-ray emission properties of Tycho. In contrast, models that considered that the remnant was evolving in a dense, but small, wind bubble reproduce reasonably well both the measured X-ray emission spectrum and the expansion parameter of Tycho’s SNR. Finally, we discuss possible mass loss scenarios in the context of single- and double-degenerate models which possible could form such a small dense wind bubble.

The impact of Type Ia supernova explosions on helium companions in the Chandrasekhar-mass explosion scenario

In the version of the SD scenario of SNe Ia studied here, a CO WD explodes close to the Chandrasekhar limit after accreting material from a non-degenerate He companion. In the present study, we employ the Stellar GADGET code to perform 3D hydrodynamical simulations of the interaction of the SN Ia ejecta with the He companion taking into account its orbital motion and spin. It is found that only 2%–5% of the initial companion mass are stripped off from the outer layers of He companions due to the SN impact. The dependence of the unbound mass (or the kick velocity) on the orbital separation can be fitted in good approximation by a power law for a given companion model. After the SN impact, the outer layers of a He donor star are significantly enriched with heavy elements from the low-expansion-velocity tail of SN Ia ejecta. The total mass of accumulated SN-ejecta material on the companion surface reaches about > 10e-3 M_sun for different companion models. This enrichment with heavy elements provides a potential way to observationally identify the surviving companion star in SN remnants. Finally, by artificially adjusting the explosion energy of the W7 explosion model, we find that the total accumulation of SN ejecta on the companion surface is also dependent on the explosion energy with a power law relation in good approximation.

Exploring the Gamma-Ray Emissivity of Young Supernova Remnants I: Hadronic Emission

Using a simplified model for the hadronic emission from young supernova remnants (SNRs), we derive an expression to calculate the hadronic luminosity with time, depending on the SN ejecta density profile and the density structure of the surrounding medium. Our analysis shows that the hadronic emission will decrease with time for core-collapse SNe expanding in the winds of their progenitor stars, but increase with time for SNe expanding into a constant density medium, typical of Type Ia SNe. Using our expressions, we can compute the time-dependent hadronic flux from some well-known young SNe and SNRs with time, and where applicable reproduce previous results in the appropriate parameter regime. Using our calculations, we also emphasize the exciting possibility that SN 1987A may become a visible gamma-ray source in the next decade.

SN 2000cx and SN 2013bh: Extremely Rare, Nearly Twin Type Ia Supernovae [Replacement]

The Type Ia supernova (SN Ia) SN 2000cx was one of the most peculiar transients ever discovered, with a rise to maximum brightness typical of a SN Ia, but a slower decline and a higher photospheric temperature. Thirteen years later SN 2013bh (aka iPTF13abc), a near identical twin, was discovered and we obtained optical and near-IR photometry and low-resolution optical spectroscopy from discovery until about 1 month past r-band maximum brightness. The spectra of both objects show iron-group elements (Co II, Ni II, Fe II, Fe III, and high-velocity features [HVFs] of Ti II), intermediate-mass elements (Si II, Si III, and S II), and separate normal velocity features (~12000 km/s) and HVFs (~24000 km/s) of Ca II. Persistent absorption from Fe III and Si III, along with the colour evolution, imply high blackbody temperatures for SNe 2013bh and 2000cx (~12000 K). Both objects lack narrow Na I D absorption and exploded in the outskirts of their hosts, indicating that the SN environments were relatively free of interstellar or circumstellar material and may imply that the progenitors came from a relatively old and low-metallicity stellar population. Models of SN 2000cx, seemingly applicable to SN 2013bh, imply the production of up to ~1 M_Sun of Ni-56 and (4.3-5.5)e-3 M_Sun of fast-moving Ca ejecta.

SN 2011fe: A Laboratory for Testing Models of Type Ia Supernovae

SN 2011fe is the nearest supernova of Type Ia (SN Ia) discovered in the modern multi-wavelength telescope era, and it also represents the earliest discovery of a SN Ia to date. As a normal SN Ia, SN 2011fe provides an excellent opportunity to decipher long-standing puzzles about the nature of SNe Ia. In this review, we summarize the extensive suite of panchromatic data on SN 2011fe, and gather interpretations of these data to answer four key questions: 1) What explodes in a SN Ia? 2) How does it explode? 3) What is the progenitor of SN 2011fe? and 4) How accurate are SNe Ia as standardizeable candles? Most aspects of SN 2011fe are consistent with the canonical picture of a massive CO white dwarf undergoing a deflagration-to-detonation transition. However, there is minimal evidence for a non-degenerate companion star, so SN 2011fe may have marked the merger of two white dwarfs.

SN 2012ca: a stripped envelope core-collapse SN interacting with dense circumstellar medium

We report optical and near-infrared observations of SN 2012ca with PESSTO, spread over one year since discovery. The SN bears many similarities to SN 1997cy and to other events classified as Type IIn but which have been suggested to have a thermonuclear origin with narrow hydrogen lines produced when the ejecta impact a hydrogen-rich circumstellar medium (CSM). Our analysis, especially in the nebular phase, reveals the presence of strong oxygen, magnesium and carbon features. The broad ejecta lines resemble those seen in Type Ic SNe. This suggests a core collapse explanation for this event, in contrast to the thermonuclear interpretation proposed for some members of this group. We suggest that the data can be explained with a hydrogen and helium deficient SN ejecta (Type I) interacting with a hydrogen-rich CSM, but that the explosion was more likely a Ic core-collapse explosion than a Type Ia thermonuclear explosion. This suggests two channels (both thermonuclear and stripped envelope core-collapse) are responsible for these SN 1997cy-like explosions.

Accurate Weak Lensing of Standard Candles, Part 2: Measuring sigma8 with Supernovae

Soon the number of type Ia supernova (SN) measurements should exceed 100,000. Understanding the effect of weak lensing by matter structures on the supernova brightness will then be more important than ever. Although SN lensing is usually seen as a source of systematic noise, we will show that it can be in fact turned into signal. More precisely, the non-Gaussianity introduced by lensing in the SN Hubble diagram dispersion depends rather sensitively on the amplitude sigma8 of the matter power spectrum. By exploiting this relation, we are able to predict constraints on sigma8 of 7% (3%) for a catalog of 100,000 (500,000) SNe of average magnitude error 0.12 without having to assume that such intrinsic dispersion is known a priori. This method is independent of and complementary to the standard methods based on CMB, cosmic shear or cluster abundance observables.

Galactic Constraints on Supernova Progenitor Models

We undertake a statistical analysis of the radial abundance distributions in the Galactic disk within a theoretical framework for Galactic chemical evolution which incorporates the influence of spiral arms. 1) The mean mass of oxygen ejected per core-collapse SNe (CC SNe) event (which are concentrated within spiral arms) is $\sim$0.27 M$_{\odot}$; 2) the mean mass of iron ejected by `tardy’ Type Ia SNe (SNeIa; progenitors of whom are older/longer-lived stars with ages $\simgt$100 Myr and up to several Gyr, which do not concentrate within spiral arms) is $\sim$0.58 M$_{\odot}$; 3) the upper mass of iron ejected by prompt SNeIa (SNe whose progenitors are younger/shorter-lived stars with ages $\simlt$100 Myr, which are concentrated within spiral arms) is $\leq$0.23 M$_{\odot}$ per event; 4) the corresponding mean mass of iron produced by CC SNe is $\leq$0.04 M$_{\odot}$ per event; (v) short-lived SNe (core-collapse or prompt SNeIa) supply $\sim$85% of the Galactic disk’s iron. The inferred low mean mass of oxygen ejected per CC SNe event implies a low upper mass limit for the corresponding progenitors of $\sim$23 M$_{\odot}$, otherwise the Galactic disk would be overabundant in oxygen. The low mean mass of iron ejected by prompt SNeIa, relative to the mass produced by tardy SNeIa ($\sim$2.5 times lower), prejudices the idea that both sub-populations of SNeIa have the same physical nature. We suggest that, perhaps, prompt SNeIa are more akin to CC SNe, and discuss the implications of such a suggestion.

High-Velocity Features in Type Ia Supernova Spectra

We use a sample of 58 low-redshift (z <= 0.03) Type Ia supernovae (SNe Ia) having well-sampled light curves and spectra near maximum light to examine the behaviour of high-velocity features (HVFs) in SN Ia spectra. We take advantage of the fact that Si II 6355 exhibits no HVFs at maximum light in any SNe Ia, while HVFs are still strong in the Ca II near-infrared feature in many SNe, allowing us to quantify the strength of HVFs by comparing the structure of these two lines. We find that the average HVF strength increases with decreasing light-curve decline rate, and rapidly declining SNe Ia (dm_15(B) >= 1.4 mag) show no HVFs in their maximum-light spectra. Comparison of HVF strength to the light-curve colour of the SNe Ia in our sample shows no evidence of correlation. We find a correlation of HVF strength with the velocity of Si II 6355 at maximum light (v_Si), such that SNe Ia with lower v_Si have stronger HVFs, while those SNe Ia firmly in the "high-velocity" (i.e., v_Si >= 12,000 km/s) subclass exhibit no HVFs in their maximum-light spectra. While v_Si and dm_15(B) show no correlation in the full sample of SNe Ia, we find a significant correlation between these quantities in the subset of SNe Ia having weak HVFs. In general, we find that slowly declining (low dm_15(B)) SNe Ia, which are more luminous and more energetic than average SNe Ia, tend to produce either high photospheric ejecta velocities (i.e., high v_Si) or strong HVFs at maximum light, but not both. Finally, we examine the evolution of HVF strength for a sample of SNe Ia having extensive pre-maximum spectroscopic coverage and find significant diversity of the pre-maximum HVF behaviour.

Observations of the unique X-ray emitting subdwarf stars HD49798 and BD+37 442

We report on the results we obtained with XMM-Newton observations of HD49798 and BD+37 442, the only two sdO stars for which X-ray emission has been observed so far. HD is a single-lined spectroscopic binary with orbital period of 1.5 days. We could establish that its companion is a massive white dwarf with M = 1.28 Msun, which makes it a candidate type Ia supernova progenitor; we also detected a significant X-ray emission during the white-dwarf eclipse, which could be X-ray emission of the sdO star itself. In the case of BD+37 442, a luminous He-rich sdO that up to now was believed to be a single star, we discovered soft X-ray emission with a periodicity of 19.2 s. This indicates that also this hot subdwarf has a compact binary companion, either a white dwarf or a neutron star, most likely powered by accretion from the wind of the sdO star.

Chemical abundances in LMC stellar populations. II. The bar sample

This paper compares the chemical evolution of the Large Magellanic Cloud (LMC) to that of the Milky Way (MW) and investigates the relation between the bar and the inner disc of the LMC in the context of the formation of the bar. We obtained high-resolution and mid signal-to-noise ratio spectra with FLAMES/GIRAFFE at ESO/VLT and performed a detailed chemical analysis of 106 and 58 LMC field red giant stars (mostly older than 1 Gyr), located in the bar and the disc of the LMC respectively. We measured elemental abundances for O, Mg, Si, Ca, Ti, Na, Sc, V, Cr, Co, Ni, Cu, Y, Zr, Ba, La and Eu. We find that the {\alpha}-element ratios [Mg/Fe] and [O/Fe] are lower in the LMC than in the MW while the LMC has similar [Si/Fe], [Ca/Fe], and [Ti/Fe] to the MW. As for the heavy elements, [Ba,La/Eu] exhibit a strong increase with increasing metallicity starting from [Fe/H]=-0.8 dex, and the LMC has lower [Y+Zr/Ba+La] ratios than the MW. Cu is almost constant over all metallicities and about 0.5 dex lower in the LMC than in the MW. The LMC bar and inner disc exhibit differences in their [{\alpha}/Fe] (slightly larger scatter for the bar in the metallicity range [-1,-0.5]), their Eu (the bar trend is above the disc trend for [Fe/H] > -0.5 dex), their Y and Zr, their Na and their V (offset between bar and disc distributions). Our results show that the chemical history of the LMC experienced a strong contribution from type Ia supernovae as well as a strong s-process enrichment from metal-poor AGB winds. Massive stars made a smaller contribution to the chemical enrichment compared to the MW. The observed differences between the bar and the disc speak in favour of an episode of enhanced star formation a few Gyr ago, occurring in the central parts of the LMC and leading to the formation of the bar. This is in agreement with recently derived star formation histories.

Color Dispersion and Milky Way Reddening Among Type Ia Supernovae

Past analyses of Type Ia Supernovae (SNe Ia) have identified an irreducible scatter of 5-10% in distance widely attributed to an intrinsic dispersion in luminosity. Another, equally valid, source of this scatter is intrinsic dispersion in color. Misidentification of the true source of this scatter can bias both the retrieved color-luminosity relation and cosmological parameter measurements. The size of this bias depends on the magnitude of the intrinsic color dispersion relative to the distribution of colors that correlate with distance. We produce a realistic simulation of a misattribution of intrinsic scatter, and find a negative bias in the recovered color-luminosity relation, beta, of dbeta -1.0 (~33%) and a positive bias in the equation of state parameter, w, of dw +0.04 (~4%). We re-analyze current published data sets with the assumptions that the distance scatter is predominantly the result of color. Unlike previous analyses, we find that the data are consistent with a Milky Way reddening law R_V=3.1, and that a Milky Way dust model better predicts the asymmetric color-luminosity trends than the conventional luminosity scatter hypothesis. We also determine that accounting for color variation reduces the correlation between various Host galaxy properties and Hubble residuals by ~20%.

Radiative Transfer Simulations for Neutron Star Merger Ejecta

The merger of binary neutron stars (NSs) is among the most promising gravitational wave (GW) sources. Detection of electromagnetic wave (EM) counterpart of GW sources is crucial to understand the nature of GW sources by identifying the host galaxy and determining the accurate distance to the sources. Among possible EM emission from the NS merger, emission powered by radioactive r-process nuclei is one of the best targets for follow-up observations. However, prediction so far does not take into account detailed r-process element abundances in the ejecta. We perform radiative transfer simulations for the NS merger ejecta including all the r-process elements from Ga to U for the first time. We show that the opacity in the NS merger ejecta is about kappa = 10 cm^2 g^{-1}, which is higher than that of Fe-rich Type Ia supernova ejecta by a factor of ~ 100. As a result, the emission is fainter and longer than previously expected. The spectra are almost featureless due to the high expansion velocity and bound-bound transitions of many different r-process elements. We demonstrate that the emission is brighter for a higher mass ratio of two NSs and a softer equation of states adopted in the merger simulations. Because of the red color of the emission, follow-up observations in red optical and near-infrared (NIR) wavelengths will be the most efficient. At 200 Mpc, expected brightness of the emission is i = 22 – 25 mag, z = 21 – 23 mag, and 21-24 mag in NIR JHK bands. Thus, observations with wide-field 4m- and 8m-class optical telescopes and wide-field NIR space telescopes are necessary. To detect this emission, the observations should be performed within 5-10 days from the detection of GWs. We also argue that the emission powered by radioactive energy can be possibly detected in the afterglow of short gamma-ray bursts by deep observations down to R ~ 27 mag for an event at z ~ 0.2.

Radiative Transfer Simulations for Neutron Star Merger Ejecta [Replacement]

The merger of binary neutron stars (NSs) is among the most promising gravitational wave (GW) sources. Next-generation GW detectors are expected to detect signals from the NS merger within 200 Mpc. Detection of electromagnetic wave (EM) counterpart is crucial to understand the nature of GW sources. Among possible EM emission from the NS merger, emission powered by radioactive r-process nuclei is one of the best targets for follow-up observations. However, prediction so far does not take into account detailed r-process element abundances in the ejecta. We perform radiative transfer simulations for the NS merger ejecta including all the r-process elements from Ga to U for the first time. We show that the opacity in the NS merger ejecta is about kappa = 10 cm^2 g^{-1}, which is higher than that of Fe-rich Type Ia supernova ejecta by a factor of ~ 100. As a result, the emission is fainter and longer than previously expected. The spectra are almost featureless due to the high expansion velocity and bound-bound transitions of many different r-process elements. We demonstrate that the emission is brighter for a higher mass ratio of two NSs and a softer equation of states adopted in the merger simulations. Because of the red color of the emission, follow-up observations in red optical and near-infrared (NIR) wavelengths will be the most efficient. At 200 Mpc, expected brightness of the emission is i = 22 – 25 AB mag, z = 21 – 23 AB mag, and 21 – 24 AB mag in NIR JHK bands. Thus, observations with wide-field 4m- and 8m-class optical telescopes and wide-field NIR space telescopes are necessary. We also argue that the emission powered by radioactive energy can be detected in the afterglow of nearby short gamma-ray bursts.

Constraining Explosion Type of Young Supernova Remnants Using 24 Micron Emission Morphology

Determination of the explosion type of supernova remnants (SNRs) can be challenging, as SNRs are hundreds to thousands of years old and supernovae (SNe) are classified based on spectral properties days after explosion. Previous studies of thermal X-ray emission from Milky Way and Large Magellanic Cloud (LMC) SNRs have shown that Type Ia and core-collapse (CC) SNRs have statistically different symmetries, and thus these sources can be typed based on their X-ray morphologies. In this paper, we extend the same technique, a multipole expansion technique using power ratios, to infrared (IR) images of SNRs to test whether they can be typed using the symmetry of their warm dust emission as well. We analyzed archival Spitzer Space Telescope Multiband Imaging Photometer (MIPS) 24 micron observations of the previously used X-ray sample, and we find that the two classes of SNRs separate according to their IR morphologies. The Type Ia SNRs are statistically more circular and mirror symmetric than the CC SNRs, likely due to the different circumstellar environments and explosion geometries of the progenitors. Broadly, our work indicates that the IR emission retains information of the explosive origins of the SNR and offers a new method to type SNRs based on IR morphology.

What Shapes Supernova Remnants?

Evidence has mounted that Type Ia and core-collapse (CC) supernovae (SNe) can have substantial deviations from spherical symmetry; one such piece of evidence is the complex morphologies of supernova remnants (SNRs). However, the relative role of the explosion geometry and the environment in shaping SNRs remains an outstanding question. Recently, we have developed techniques to quantify the morphologies of SNRs, and we have applied these methods to the extensive X-ray and infrared archival images available of Milky Way and Magellanic Cloud SNRs. In this proceeding, we highlight some results from these studies, with particular emphasis on SNR asymmetries and whether they arise from "nature" versus "nurture".

The Tip of the Red Giant Branch Distances to Type Ia Supernova Host Galaxies. II. M66 and M96 in the Leo I Group

M66 and M96 in the Leo I Group are nearby spiral galaxies hosting Type Ia Supernovae (SNe Ia). We estimate the distances to these galaxies from the luminosity of the tip of the red giant branch (TRGB). We obtain $VI$ photometry of resolved stars in these galaxies from $F555W$ and $F814W$ images in the {\it Hubble Space Telescope} archive. From the luminosity function of these red giants we find the TRGB $I$-band magnitude to be $I_{\rm TRGB}=26.20\pm0.03$ for M66 and $26.21\pm0.03$ for M96. These values yield distance modulus $(m-M)_0=30.12\pm0.03 ({\rm random})\pm0.12 ({\rm systematic})$ for M66 and $(m-M)_0=30.15\pm0.03 ({\rm random})\pm0.12 ({\rm systematic})$ for M96. These results show that they are indeed the members of the same group. With these results we derive absolute maximum magnitudes of two SNe (SN 1989B in M66 and SN 1998bu in M96). $V$-band magnitudes of these SNe Ia are $\sim$0.2 mag fainter than SN 2011fe in M101, the nearest recent SN Ia. We also derive near-infrared magnitudes for SN 1998bu. Optical magnitudes of three SNe Ia (SN 1989B, SN 1998bu, and SN 2011fe) based on TRGB analysis yield a Hubble constant, $H_0=67.6\pm1.5 ({\rm random})\pm 3.7({\rm systematic})$ \kmsMpc. This value is similar to the values derived from recent WMAP9 results, $H_0=69.32\pm0.80$ \kmsMpc. % and from Planck results, $H_0=67.3\pm1.2$ \kmsMpc, but smaller than other recent determinations based on Cepheid calibration for SNe Ia luminosity, $H_0 = 74 \pm3$ km s$^{-1}$ Mpc$^{-1}$.

Chemical evolution of Local Group dwarf galaxies in a cosmological context -- I. A new modelling approach and its application to the Sculptor dwarf spheroidal galaxy

We present a new approach for chemical evolution modelling, specifically designed to investigate the chemical properties of dwarf galaxies in a full cosmological framework. In particular, we focus on the Sculptor dwarf spheroidal galaxy as a test bed for our model. We select four candidate Sculptor-like galaxies from the satellite galaxy catalogue generated by implementation of a version of the Munich semi-analytic model for galaxy formation on the level 2 Aquarius dark matter simulations. We follow explicitly the evolution of several chemical elements, both in the cold gas out of which the stars form and in the hot medium residing in the halo. We take into account in detail the lifetimes of stars of different initial masses, the distribution of the delay times for type Ia supernova explosions and the dependency of the stellar yields from the initial metallicity of the stars. We allow large fractions of metals to be deposited into the hot phase, either directly as stars die or through reheated gas flows powered by supernova explosions. In order to reproduce both the observed metallicity distribution function and the observed abundance ratios of long-lived stars of Sculptor, large fractions of the reheated metals must never re-enter regions of active star formation. Our analysis sets further constraints on the semi-analytical models and, at large, on possible metal enrichment scenarios for the Sculptor dwarf spheroidal galaxy.

Supernova Ejecta in the Youngest Galactic Supernova Remnant G1.9+0.3

G1.9+0.3 is the youngest known Galactic supernova remnant (SNR), with an estimated supernova (SN) explosion date of about 1900, and most likely located near the Galactic Center. Only the outermost ejecta layers with free-expansion velocities larger than about 18,000 km/s have been shocked so far in this dynamically young, likely Type Ia SNR. A long (980 ks) Chandra observation in 2011 allowed spatially-resolved spectroscopy of heavy-element ejecta. We denoised Chandra data with the spatio-spectral method of Krishnamurthy et al., and used a wavelet-based technique to spatially localize thermal emission produced by intermediate-mass elements (IMEs: Si and S) and iron. The spatial distribution of both IMEs and Fe is extremely asymmetric, with the strongest ejecta emission in the northern rim. Fe Kalpha emission is particularly prominent there, and fits with thermal models indicate strongly oversolar Fe abundances. In a localized, outlying region in the northern rim, IMEs are less abundant than Fe, indicating that undiluted Fe-group elements (including 56Ni) with velocities larger than 18,000 km/s were ejected by this SN. But in the inner west rim, we find Si- and S-rich ejecta without any traces of Fe, so high-velocity products of O-burning were also ejected. G1.9+0.3 appears similar to energetic Type Ia SNe such as SN 2010jn where iron-group elements at such high free-expansion velocities have been recently detected. The pronounced asymmetry in the ejecta distribution and abundance inhomogeneities are best explained by a strongly asymmetric SN explosion, similar to those produced in some recent 3D delayed-detonation Type Ia models.

Modelling Element Abundances in Semi-analytic Models of Galaxy Formation

We update the treatment of chemical evolution in the Munich semi-analytic model, L-GALAXIES. Our new implementation includes delayed enrichment from stellar winds, supernovae type II (SNe-II) and supernovae type Ia (SNe-Ia), as well as metallicity-dependent yields and a reformulation of the associated supernova feedback. Two different sets of SN-II yields and three different SN-Ia delay-time distributions (DTDs) are considered, and eleven heavy elements (including O, Mg and Fe) are self-consistently tracked. We compare the results of this new implementation with data on a) local, star-forming galaxies, b) Milky Way disc G dwarfs, and c) local, elliptical galaxies. We find that the z=0 gas-phase mass-metallicity relation is very well reproduced for all forms of DTD considered, as is the [Fe/H] distribution in the Milky Way disc. The [O/Fe] distribution in the Milky Way disc is best reproduced when using a DTD with less than or equal to 50 per cent of SNe-Ia exploding within ~400 Myrs. Positive slopes in the mass-[alpha/Fe] relations of local ellipticals are also obtained when using a DTD with such a minor `prompt’ component. Alternatively, metal-rich winds that drive light alpha elements directly out into the circumgalactic medium also produce positive slopes for all forms of DTD and SN-II yields considered. Overall, we find that the best model for matching the wide range of observational data considered here should include a power-law SN-Ia DTD, SN-II yields that take account of prior mass loss through stellar winds, and some direct ejection of light alpha elements out of galaxies.

Dark-matter admixed white dwarfs [Replacement]

We study the equilibrium structures of white dwarfs with dark matter cores formed by non-self-annihilating dark matter DM particles with mass ranging from 1 GeV to 100 GeV, which are assumed to form an ideal degenerate Fermi gas inside the stars. For DM particles of mass 10 GeV and 100 GeV, we find that stable stellar models exist only if the mass of the DM core inside the star is less than O(10^-3) Msun and O(10^-6) Msun, respectively. The global properties of these stars, and in particular the corresponding Chandrasekhar mass limits, are essentially the same as those of traditional white dwarf models without DM. Nevertheless, in the 10 GeV case, the gravitational attraction of the DM core is strong enough to squeeze the normal matter in the core region to densities above neutron drip, far above those in traditional white dwarfs. For DM with particle mass 1 GeV, the DM core inside the star can be as massive as around 0.1 Msun and affects the global structure of the star significantly. In this case, the radius of a stellar model with DM can be about two times smaller than that of a traditional white dwarf. Furthermore, the Chandrasekhar mass limit can also be decreased by as much as 40%. Our results may have implications on to what extent type Ia supernovae can be regarded as standard candles – a key assumption in the discovery of dark energy.

Dark-matter admixed white dwarfs

We study the equilibrium structures of white dwarfs with dark matter cores formed by non-self-annihilating dark matter DM particles with mass ranging from 1 GeV to 100 GeV, which are assumed to form an ideal degenerate Fermi gas inside the stars. For DM particles of mass 10 GeV and 100 GeV, we find that stable stellar models exist only if the mass of the DM core inside the star is less than O(10^-3) Msun and O(10^-6) Msun, respectively. The global properties of these stars, and in particular the corresponding Chandrasekhar mass limits, are essentially the same as those of traditional white dwarf models without DM. Nevertheless, in the 10 GeV case, the gravitational attraction of the DM core is strong enough to squeeze the normal matter in the core region to densities above neutron drip, far above those in traditional white dwarfs. For DM with particle mass 1 GeV, the DM core inside the star can be as massive as around 0.1 Msun and affects the global structure of the star significantly. In this case, the radius of a stellar model with DM can be about two times smaller than that of a traditional white dwarf. Furthermore, the Chandrasekhar mass limit can also be decreased by as much as 40%. Our results may have implications on to what extent type Ia supernovae can be regarded as standard candles – a key assumption in the discovery of dark energy.

New mass limit of white dwarfs [Replacement]

Is the Chandrasekhar mass limit for white dwarfs (WDs) set in stone? Not anymore — recent observations of over-luminous, peculiar type Ia supernovae can be explained if significantly super-Chandrasekhar WDs exist as their progenitors, thus barring them to be used as cosmic distance indicators. However, there is no estimate of a mass limit for these super-Chandrasekhar WD candidates yet. Can they be arbitrarily large? In fact, the answer is no! We arrive at this revelation by exploiting the flux freezing theorem in observed, accreting, magnetized WDs, which brings in Landau quantization of the underlying electron degenerate gas. This essay presents the calculations which pave the way for the ultimate (significantly super-Chandrasekhar) mass limit of WDs, heralding a paradigm shift 80 years after Chandrasekhar’s discovery.

Anisotropy of Cosmic Acceleration [Replacement]

In this paper, we study the anisotropy of cosmic acceleration by dividing the Union2 Type Ia supernova dataset into 12 subsets according to their positions in Galactic coordinate system. In each region, we derive the deceleration parameter $q_0$ as the diagnostic to quantify the anisotropy level in the corresponding direction, and construct $q_0$ anisotropic maps by combining these $q_0$ values. In addition to the monopole component, we find the significant dipole effect in the $q_0$-maps with the amplitude $A_1=0.466^{+0.255}_{-0.205}$, which deviates from zero at more than 2-$\sigma$ level. The direction of the best-fit dipole is ($\theta=108.8^{\circ}$, $\phi=187.0^{\circ}$) in Galactic system. Interesting enough, we find the direction of this dipole is nearly perpendicular to the CMB kinematic dipole, and the angle between them is $95.7^{\circ}$. The perpendicular relation is anomalous at the 1-in-10 level.

 

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