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The fast, luminous ultraviolet transient AT2018cow: extreme supernova, or disruption of a star by an intermediate-mass black hole?

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dc.contributor.author Perley, D. A
dc.contributor.author Mazzali, P. A
dc.contributor.author Yan, Lin|
dc.contributor.author Cenko, S. Bradley
dc.contributor.author Gezari, Suvi
dc.contributor.author Taggart, Kirsty
dc.contributor.author Blagorodnova, Nadia
dc.contributor.author Fremling, Christoffer
dc.contributor.author Mockler, Brenna
dc.contributor.author Singh, A
dc.contributor.author Tominaga, Nozomu
dc.contributor.author Tanaka, Masaomi
dc.contributor.author Watson, Alan M
dc.contributor.author Ahumada, Tomas
dc.contributor.author Anupama, G. C
dc.contributor.author Ashall, Chris
dc.contributor.author Becerra, Rosa L
dc.contributor.author Bersier, David
dc.contributor.author Bhalerao, Varun
dc.contributor.author Bloom, Joshua S
dc.contributor.author Butler, Nathaniel R
dc.contributor.author Copperwheat, Chris
dc.contributor.author Coughlin, Michael W
dc.contributor.author De, Kishalay
dc.contributor.author Drake, Andrew J
dc.contributor.author Duev, Dmitry A
dc.contributor.author Frederick, Sara
dc.contributor.author Gonzalez, J. J
dc.contributor.author Goobar, Ariel
dc.contributor.author Heida, Marianne
dc.contributor.author Ho, Anna Y. Q
dc.contributor.author Horst, John
dc.contributor.author Hung, Tiara
dc.contributor.author Itoh, Ryosuke
dc.contributor.author Jencson, Jacob E
dc.contributor.author Kasliwal, Mansi M
dc.contributor.author Kawai, Nobuyuki
dc.contributor.author Khanam, Tanazza
dc.contributor.author Kulkarni, Shrinivas R
dc.contributor.author Brajesh Kumar
dc.contributor.author Harsh Kumar
dc.contributor.author Kutyrev, Alexander S
dc.contributor.author Lee, William H
dc.contributor.author Maeda, Keiichi
dc.contributor.author Ashish Mahabal
dc.contributor.author Murata, Katsuhiro L
dc.contributor.author Neill, James D
dc.contributor.author Ngeow, Chow-Choong
dc.contributor.author Penprase, Bryan
dc.contributor.author Pian, Elena
dc.contributor.author Quimby, Robert
dc.contributor.author Ramirez-Ruiz, Enrico
dc.contributor.author Richer, Michael G
dc.contributor.author Roman-Zuniga, Carlos G
dc.contributor.author Sahu, D. K
dc.contributor.author Srivastav, S
dc.contributor.author 9 others
dc.date.accessioned 2020-11-19T14:07:02Z
dc.date.available 2020-11-19T14:07:02Z
dc.date.issued 2019-03
dc.identifier.citation Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society, Vol. 484, No. 1, pp. 1031-1049 en_US
dc.identifier.issn 1365-2966
dc.identifier.uri http://prints.iiap.res.in/handle/2248/7301
dc.description Restricted Access © Royal Astronomical Society https://doi.org/10.1093/mnras/sty3420 en_US
dc.description.abstract Wide-field optical surveys have begun to uncover large samples of fast (trise ≲ 5 d), luminous (Mpeak < −18), blue transients. While commonly attributed to the breakout of a supernova shock into a dense wind, the great distances to the transients of this class found so far have hampered detailed investigation of their properties. We present photometry and spectroscopy from a comprehensive worldwide campaign to observe AT 2018cow (ATLAS 18qqn), the first fast-luminous optical transient to be found in real time at low redshift. Our first spectra (<2 days after discovery) are entirely featureless. A very broad absorption feature suggestive of near-relativistic velocities develops between 3 and 8 days, then disappears. Broad emission features of H and He develop after >10 days. The spectrum remains extremely hot throughout its evolution, and the photospheric radius contracts with time (receding below R < 1014 cm after 1 month). This behaviour does not match that of any known supernova, although a relativistic jet within a fallback supernova could explain some of the observed features. Alternatively, the transient could originate from the disruption of a star by an intermediate-mass black hole, although this would require long-lasting emission of highly super-Eddington thermal radiation. In either case, AT 2018cow suggests that the population of fast luminous transients represents a new class of astrophysical event. Intensive follow-up of this event in its late phases, and of any future events found at comparable distance, will be essential to better constrain their origins en_US
dc.language.iso en en_US
dc.publisher Oxford University Press on behalf of the Royal Astronomical Society en_US
dc.subject Black hole en_US
dc.subject Stars en_US
dc.subject Supernovae: general en_US
dc.subject Supernova: individual: AT2018cow en_US
dc.title The fast, luminous ultraviolet transient AT2018cow: extreme supernova, or disruption of a star by an intermediate-mass black hole? en_US
dc.type Article en_US

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