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Durham University

Department of Physics

Staff profile

Publication details for Dr Tim Butterley

Van Dyk, Schuyler D., Zheng, WeiKang, Maund, Justyn R., Brink, Thomas G., Srinivasan, Sundar, Andrews, Jennifer E., Smith, Nathan, Leonard, Douglas C., Morozova, Viktoriya, Filippenko, Alexei V., Conner, Brody, Milisavljevic, Dan, de Jaeger, Thomas, Long, Knox S., Isaacson, Howard, Crossfield, Ian J. M., Kosiarek, Molly R., Howard, Andrew W., Fox, Ori D., Kelly, Patrick L., Piro, Anthony L., Littlefair, Stuart P., Dhillon, Vik S., Wilson, Richard, Butterley, Timothy, Yunus, Sameen, Channa, Sanyum, Jeffers, Benjamin T., Falcon, Edward, Ross, Timothy W., Hestenes, Julia C., Stegman, Samantha M., Zhang, Keto & Kumar, Sahana (2019). The Type II-plateau Supernova 2017eaw in NGC 6946 and Its Red Supergiant Progenitor. The Astrophysical Journal 875(2): 136.

Author(s) from Durham

Abstract

We present extensive optical photometric and spectroscopic observations, from 4 to 482 days after explosion, of the
Type II-plateau (II-P) supernova (SN) 2017eaw in NGC 6946. SN 2017eaw is a normal SN II-P intermediate in
properties between, for example, SN 1999em and SN 2012aw and the more luminous SN 2004et, also in NGC 6946.
We have determined that the extinction to SN 2017eaw is primarily due to the Galactic foreground and that the SN site
metallicity is likely subsolar. We have also independently confirmed a tip-of-the-red-giant-branch (TRGB) distance to
NGC 6946 of 7.73 ± 0.78 Mpc. The distances to the SN that we have also estimated via both the standardized candle
method and expanding photosphere method corroborate the TRGB distance. We confirm the SN progenitor identity in
pre-explosion archival Hubble Space Telescope (HST) and Spitzer Space Telescope images, via imaging of the SN
through our HST Target of Opportunity program. Detailed modeling of the progenitor’s spectral energy distribution
indicates that the star was a dusty, luminous red supergiant consistent with an initial mass of ∼15 Me.