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ASASSN-15lh: The Most Luminous Supernova Ever Discovered

Dong, S and Shappee, BJ and Prieto, JL and Jha, SW and Stanek, KZ and Holoien, TW-S and Kochanek, CS and Thompson, TA and Morrell, N and Thompson, IB and Basu, U and Beacom, JF and Bersier, D and Brimacombe, J and Brown, JS and Chen, P and Conseil, E and Danilet, AB and Falco, E and Grupe, D and Kiyota, S and Masi, G and Nicholls, B and Olivares, F and Pignata, G and Pojmanski, G and Simonian, GV and Szczygiel, DM and Wozniak, PR (2016) ASASSN-15lh: The Most Luminous Supernova Ever Discovered. SCIENCE, 351 (6270). pp. 257-260. ISSN 0036-8075

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We report the discovery and early evolution of ASASSN-15lh, the most luminous supernova ever found. At redshift z=0.2326, ASASSN-15lh reached an absolute magnitude of M_{u,AB} ~ -23.5 and bolometric luminosity L_bol ~ 2.2x10^45 ergs/s, which is >~ 2 times more luminous than any previously known supernova. Its spectra match the hydrogen-poor sub-class of super-luminous supernovae (SLSNe-I), whose energy sources and progenitors are poorly understood. In contrast to known SLSNe-I, most of which reside in star-forming, dwarf galaxies, its host appears to be a luminous galaxy (M_V ~ -22; M_K ~ -25.1) with little star formation. In the two months since its first detection, ASASSN-15lh has radiated ~7.5x10^51 ergs, challenging the popular magnetar model for the engine of SLSNe-I.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: astro-ph.HE; astro-ph.HE; astro-ph.SR
Subjects: Q Science > QB Astronomy
Divisions: Astrophysics Research Institute
Publisher: American Association for the Advancement of Science
Related URLs:
Date Deposited: 10 Feb 2016 11:17
Last Modified: 10 Feb 2016 11:17
URI: http://researchonline.ljmu.ac.uk/id/eprint/1684

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