The transitional stripped-envelope SN2008ax

Spectral evolution and evidence for large asphericity

R. Chornock, A. V. Filippenko, W. Li, G. H. Marion, R. J. Foley, M. Modjaz, M. Rafelski, G. D. Becker, W. H. De Vries, P. Garnavich, R. A. Jorgenson, D. K. Lynch, A. L. Malec, E. C. Moran, M. T. Murphy, R. J. Rudy, R. W. Russell, J. M. Silverman, T. N. Steele, A. Stockton & 2 others A. M. Wolfe, C. E. Woodward

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

    Abstract

    Supernova (SN) 2008ax in NGC 4490 was discovered within hours after shock breakout, presenting the rare opportunity to study a core-collapse SN beginning with the initial envelope-cooling phase immediately following shock breakout. We present an extensive sequence of optical and near-infrared spectra, as well as three epochs of optical spectropolarimetry. Our initial spectra, taken twodays after shock breakout, are dominated by hydrogen Balmer lines at high velocity. However, by maximum light, He I lines dominated the optical and near-infrared spectra, which closely resembled those of normal Type Ib supernovae (SNeIb) such as SN1999ex. This spectroscopic transition defines Type IIb SNe, but the strong similarity of SN2008ax to normal SNeIb beginning near maximum light, including an absorption feature near 6270 due to Hα at high velocities, suggests that many objects classified as SNeIb in the literature may have ejected similar amounts of hydrogen as SN2008ax, roughly a few × 0.01 M. Only the unusually early discovery of SN2008ax allowed us to observe the spectroscopic signatures of the hydrogen-rich outer ejecta. Early-time spectropolarimetry (six and ninedays after shock breakout) revealed strong line polarization modulations of 3.4% across Hα, indicating the presence of large asphericities in the outer ejecta and possibly that the spectrum of SN2008ax could be dependent on the viewing angle. After removal of interstellar polarization, the continuum shares a common polarization angle with the hydrogen, helium, and oxygen lines, while the calcium and iron absorptions are oriented at different angles. This is clear evidence of deviations from axisymmetry even in the outer ejecta. Intrinsic continuum polarization of 0.64% only ninedays after shock breakout shows that the outer layers of the ejecta were quite aspherical. A single epoch of late-time spectropolarimetry as well as the shapes of the nebular line profiles demonstrate that asphericities extended from the outermost layers all the way down to the center of this core-collapse SN. SN2008ax may in some ways be an extragalactic analog of the explosion giving rise to Cassiopeia A, which has recently been determined to be a remnant of an SNIIb.

    Original languageEnglish (US)
    Article number41
    JournalAstrophysical Journal
    Volume739
    Issue number1
    DOIs
    StatePublished - Sep 20 2011

    Fingerprint

    asphericity
    ejecta
    envelopes
    polarization
    shock
    hydrogen
    supernovae
    near infrared
    infrared spectra
    time measurement
    Cassiopeia A
    continuums
    polarization modulation
    helium
    explosion
    calcium
    explosions
    cooling
    iron
    oxygen

    ASJC Scopus subject areas

    • Space and Planetary Science
    • Astronomy and Astrophysics

    Cite this

    Chornock, R., Filippenko, A. V., Li, W., Marion, G. H., Foley, R. J., Modjaz, M., ... Woodward, C. E. (2011). The transitional stripped-envelope SN2008ax: Spectral evolution and evidence for large asphericity. Astrophysical Journal, 739(1), [41]. https://doi.org/10.1088/0004-637X/739/1/41

    The transitional stripped-envelope SN2008ax : Spectral evolution and evidence for large asphericity. / Chornock, R.; Filippenko, A. V.; Li, W.; Marion, G. H.; Foley, R. J.; Modjaz, M.; Rafelski, M.; Becker, G. D.; De Vries, W. H.; Garnavich, P.; Jorgenson, R. A.; Lynch, D. K.; Malec, A. L.; Moran, E. C.; Murphy, M. T.; Rudy, R. J.; Russell, R. W.; Silverman, J. M.; Steele, T. N.; Stockton, A.; Wolfe, A. M.; Woodward, C. E.

    In: Astrophysical Journal, Vol. 739, No. 1, 41, 20.09.2011.

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

    Chornock, R, Filippenko, AV, Li, W, Marion, GH, Foley, RJ, Modjaz, M, Rafelski, M, Becker, GD, De Vries, WH, Garnavich, P, Jorgenson, RA, Lynch, DK, Malec, AL, Moran, EC, Murphy, MT, Rudy, RJ, Russell, RW, Silverman, JM, Steele, TN, Stockton, A, Wolfe, AM & Woodward, CE 2011, 'The transitional stripped-envelope SN2008ax: Spectral evolution and evidence for large asphericity', Astrophysical Journal, vol. 739, no. 1, 41. https://doi.org/10.1088/0004-637X/739/1/41
    Chornock, R. ; Filippenko, A. V. ; Li, W. ; Marion, G. H. ; Foley, R. J. ; Modjaz, M. ; Rafelski, M. ; Becker, G. D. ; De Vries, W. H. ; Garnavich, P. ; Jorgenson, R. A. ; Lynch, D. K. ; Malec, A. L. ; Moran, E. C. ; Murphy, M. T. ; Rudy, R. J. ; Russell, R. W. ; Silverman, J. M. ; Steele, T. N. ; Stockton, A. ; Wolfe, A. M. ; Woodward, C. E. / The transitional stripped-envelope SN2008ax : Spectral evolution and evidence for large asphericity. In: Astrophysical Journal. 2011 ; Vol. 739, No. 1.
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    abstract = "Supernova (SN) 2008ax in NGC 4490 was discovered within hours after shock breakout, presenting the rare opportunity to study a core-collapse SN beginning with the initial envelope-cooling phase immediately following shock breakout. We present an extensive sequence of optical and near-infrared spectra, as well as three epochs of optical spectropolarimetry. Our initial spectra, taken twodays after shock breakout, are dominated by hydrogen Balmer lines at high velocity. However, by maximum light, He I lines dominated the optical and near-infrared spectra, which closely resembled those of normal Type Ib supernovae (SNeIb) such as SN1999ex. This spectroscopic transition defines Type IIb SNe, but the strong similarity of SN2008ax to normal SNeIb beginning near maximum light, including an absorption feature near 6270 due to Hα at high velocities, suggests that many objects classified as SNeIb in the literature may have ejected similar amounts of hydrogen as SN2008ax, roughly a few × 0.01 M. Only the unusually early discovery of SN2008ax allowed us to observe the spectroscopic signatures of the hydrogen-rich outer ejecta. Early-time spectropolarimetry (six and ninedays after shock breakout) revealed strong line polarization modulations of 3.4{\%} across Hα, indicating the presence of large asphericities in the outer ejecta and possibly that the spectrum of SN2008ax could be dependent on the viewing angle. After removal of interstellar polarization, the continuum shares a common polarization angle with the hydrogen, helium, and oxygen lines, while the calcium and iron absorptions are oriented at different angles. This is clear evidence of deviations from axisymmetry even in the outer ejecta. Intrinsic continuum polarization of 0.64{\%} only ninedays after shock breakout shows that the outer layers of the ejecta were quite aspherical. A single epoch of late-time spectropolarimetry as well as the shapes of the nebular line profiles demonstrate that asphericities extended from the outermost layers all the way down to the center of this core-collapse SN. SN2008ax may in some ways be an extragalactic analog of the explosion giving rise to Cassiopeia A, which has recently been determined to be a remnant of an SNIIb.",
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    AU - Chornock, R.

    AU - Filippenko, A. V.

    AU - Li, W.

    AU - Marion, G. H.

    AU - Foley, R. J.

    AU - Modjaz, M.

    AU - Rafelski, M.

    AU - Becker, G. D.

    AU - De Vries, W. H.

    AU - Garnavich, P.

    AU - Jorgenson, R. A.

    AU - Lynch, D. K.

    AU - Malec, A. L.

    AU - Moran, E. C.

    AU - Murphy, M. T.

    AU - Rudy, R. J.

    AU - Russell, R. W.

    AU - Silverman, J. M.

    AU - Steele, T. N.

    AU - Stockton, A.

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