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Title: Extreme supernova models for the super-luminous transient ASASSN-15LH

The recent discovery of the unprecedentedly super-luminous transient ASASSN-15lh (or SN 2015L) with its UV-bright secondary peak challenges all the power-input models that have been proposed for super-luminous supernovae. Here we examine some of the few viable interpretations of ASASSN-15lh in the context of a stellar explosion, involving combinations of one or more power inputs. We model the light curve of ASASSN-15lh with a hybrid model that includes contributions from magnetar spin-down energy and hydrogen-poor circumstellar interaction. We also investigate models of pure circumstellar interaction with a massive hydrogen-deficient shell and discuss the lack of interaction features in the observed spectra. We find that, as a supernova, ASASSN-15lh can be best modeled by the energetic core-collapse of an ~40 M star interacting with a hydrogen-poor shell of ~20 M . The circumstellar shell and progenitor mass are consistent with a rapidly rotating pulsational pair-instability supernova progenitor as required for strong interaction following the final supernova explosion. Additional energy injection by a magnetar with an initial period of 1–2 ms and magnetic field of 0.1–1 × 10 14 G may supply the excess luminosity required to overcome the deficit in single-component models, but this requires more fine-tuning and extreme parametersmore » for the magnetar, as well as the assumption of efficient conversion of magnetar energy into radiation. As a result, we thus favor a single-input model where the reverse shock formed in a strong SN ejecta–circumstellar matter interaction following a very powerful core-collapse SN explosion can supply the luminosity needed to reproduce the late-time UV-bright plateau.« less
ORCiD logo [1] ; ORCiD logo [2] ; ORCiD logo [3] ;  [4] ; ORCiD logo [5] ;  [6]
  1. Univ. of Chicago, Chicago, IL (United States)
  2. Univ. of Texas at Austin, Austin, TX (United States)
  3. Univ. of Texas at Austin, Austin, TX (United States); Univ. of Szeged, Szeged (Hungary); Hungarian Academy of Sciences, Budapest (Hungary)
  4. Univ. of Szeged, Szeged (Hungary)
  5. Los Alamos National Lab. (LANL), Los Alamos, NM (United States); Brigham Young Univ., Provo, UT (United States)
  6. Los Alamos National Lab. (LANL), Los Alamos, NM (United States)
Publication Date:
Report Number(s):
Journal ID: ISSN 1538-4357; TRN: US1701660
Grant/Contract Number:
Accepted Manuscript
Journal Name:
The Astrophysical Journal (Online)
Additional Journal Information:
Journal Name: The Astrophysical Journal (Online); Journal Volume: 828; Journal Issue: 2; Journal ID: ISSN 1538-4357
Institute of Physics (IOP)
Research Org:
Los Alamos National Lab. (LANL), Los Alamos, NM (United States)
Sponsoring Org:
USDOE National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA)
Country of Publication:
United States
79 ASTRONOMY AND ASTROPHYSICS; supernovae; circumstellar matter; stars: evolution; stars: mass-loss; stars: massive; supernovae: general
OSTI Identifier: