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SN 1991T: Re ections of Past Glory 1

By Brian P. Schmidt, Robert P. Kirshner, Bruno Leibundgut, Lisa A. Wells, Alain C. Porter, Pilar Ruiz-lapuente and Peter Challis


We have obtained photometry and spectra of SN 1991T which extend more than 1000 days past maximum light, by far the longest a SN Ia has been followed. Although SN 1991T exhibited nearly normal photometric behavior in the rst 400 days following maximum, by 600 days its decline had slowed, and by 950 days the supernova brightness was consistent with a constant apparent magnitude of mB = 21:30. Spectra near maximum showed minor variations on the SN Ia theme which grew less conspicuous during the exponential decline. At 270 days the nebular spectrum was composed of Fe and Co lines common to SNe Ia. However, by 750 days past maximum light, these lines had shifted in wavelength, and were superimposed on a strong blue continuum. The luminosity of SN 1991T at 950 days is more than 9:0 1038 (D=13 Mpc) 2 ergs s�1 with a rate of decline of less than 0:04 mags/100 days. We show that this emission is likely to be light that was emitted by SN 1991T near maximum light which has re ected from foreground dust, much like the light echos observed around SN 1987A

Year: 2013
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