Volume 622, February 2019
|Number of page(s)||18|
|Section||Stellar structure and evolution|
|Published online||29 January 2019|
Supernovae from blue supergiant progenitors: What a mess!
Unidad Mixta Internacional Franco-Chilena de Astronomía (CNRS UMI 3386), Departamento de Astronomía, Universidad de Chile, Camino El Observatorio 1515, Las Condes, Santiago, Chile
2 Department of Physics and Astronomy & Pittsburgh Particle Physics, Astrophysics, and Cosmology Center (PITT PACC), University of Pittsburgh, 3941 O’Hara Street, Pittsburgh, PA 15260, USA
Accepted: 11 December 2018
Supernova (SN) 1987A was classified as a peculiar Type II SN because of its long rising light curve and the persistent presence of H I lines in optical spectra. It was subsequently realized that its progenitor was a blue supergiant (BSG), rather than a red supergiant (RSG) as for normal, Type II-P, SNe. Since then, the number of Type II-pec SNe has grown, revealing a rich diversity in photometric and spectroscopic properties. In this study, using a single 15 M⊙ low-metallicity progenitor that dies as a BSG, we have generated explosions with a range of energies and 56Ni masses. We then performed the radiative transfer modeling with CMFGEN, from 1 d until 300 d after explosion for all ejecta. Our models yield light curves that rise to optical maximum in about 100 d, with a similar brightening rate, and with a peak absolute V-band magnitude spanning −14 to −16.5 mag. All models follow a similar color evolution, entering the recombination phase within a few days of explosion, and reddening further until the nebular phase. Their spectral evolution is analogous, mostly differing in line width. With this model set, we study the Type II-pec SNe 1987A, 2000cb, 2006V, 2006au, 2009E, and 2009mw. The photometric and spectroscopic diversity of observed SNe II-pec suggests that there is no prototype for this class. All these SNe brighten to maximum faster than our limited set of models, except perhaps SN 2009mw. The spectral evolution of SN 1987A conflicts with other observations in this set and conflicts with model predictions from 20 d until maximum: Hα narrows and weakens while Ba II lines strengthen faster than expected, which we interpret as signatures of clumping. SN 2000cb rises to maximum in only 20 d and shows weak Ba II lines. Its spectral evolution (color, line width and strength) is well matched by an energetic ejecta but the light curve may require strong asymmetry. The persistent blue color, narrow lines, and weak Hα absorption, seen in SN 2006V conflicts with expectations for a BSG explosion powered by 56Ni and may require an alternative power source. In contrast with theoretical expectations, observed spectra reveal a diverse behavior for lines like Ba II 6142 Å, Na I D, and Hα. In addition to diversity arising from different BSG progenitors, we surmise that their ejecta are asymmetric, clumped, and, in some cases, not solely powered by 56Ni decay.
Key words: radiative transfer / hydrodynamics / supernovae: general / supernovae: individual: SN1987A
© ESO 2019
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