Journal Article

The nebular spectrum of the Type Ia supernova 2003hv: evidence for a non-standard event

Paolo A. Mazzali, I. Maurer, M. Stritzinger, S. Taubenberger, S. Benetti and S. Hachinger

in Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society

Published on behalf of The Royal Astronomical Society

Volume 416, issue 2, pages 881-892
Published in print September 2011 | ISSN: 0035-8711
Published online September 2011 | e-ISSN: 1365-2966 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/j.1365-2966.2011.19000.x
The nebular spectrum of the Type Ia supernova 2003hv: evidence for a non-standard event

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The optical and near-infrared (near-IR) late-time spectra of the under-luminous Type Ia supernova 2003hv are analysed with a code that computes the nebular emission from a supernova nebula. Synthetic spectra based on the classical explosion model W7 are unable to reproduce the large Fe iii/Fe ii ratio and the low IR flux at ∼1 year after the explosion, although the optical spectrum of SN 2003hv is reproduced reasonably well for a supernova of luminosity intermediate between normal and subluminous (SN 1991bg-like) ones. A possible solution is that the inner layers of the supernova ejecta (v≲ 8000 km s−1) contain less mass than predicted by classical explosion models like W7. If this inner region contains ∼ 0.5 M of material, as opposed to ∼ 0.9 M in Chandrasekhar-mass models developed within the single-degenerate scenario, the low density inhibits recombination, favouring the large Fe iii/Fe ii ratio observed in the optical, and decreases the flux in the [Fe ii] lines which dominate the IR spectrum. The most likely scenario may be an explosion of a sub-Chandrasekhar-mass white dwarf. Alternatively, the violent/dynamical merger of two white dwarfs with the combined mass exceeding the Chandrasekhar limit also shows a reduced inner density.

Keywords: radiation mechanisms: thermal; supernovae: general; supernovae: individual: SN 2003hv

Journal Article.  9636 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Astronomy and Astrophysics

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