EARLY-phase photometry and spectroscopy of transitional type Ia SN 2012ht: Direct constraint on the rise time

Masayuki Yamanaka, Keiichi Maeda, Miho Kawabata, Masaomi Tanaka, Katsutoshi Takaki, Issei Ueno, Kazunari Masumoto, Koji S. Kawabata, Ryosuke Itoh, Yuki Moritani, Hiroshi Akitaya, Akira Arai, Satoshi Honda, Koichi Nishiyama, Fujio Kabashima, Katsura Matsumoto, Daisaku Nogami, Michitoshi Yoshida

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34 Citations (Scopus)


We report photometric and spectroscopic observations of the nearby Type Ia Supernova (SN Ia) 2012ht from -15.8 days to +49.1 days after B-band maximum. The decline rate of the light curve is Δm 15(B) = 1.39 ± 0.05 mag, which is intermediate between normal and subluminous SNe Ia, and similar to that of the "transitional" Type Ia SN 2004eo. The spectral line profiles also closely resemble those of SN 2004eo. We were able to observe SN 2012ht at a very early phase, when it was still rising and was about three magnitudes fainter than at the peak. The rise time to the B-band maximum is estimated to be 17.6 ± 0.5 days and the time of the explosion is MJD 56277.98 ± 0.13. SN 2012ht is the first transitional SN Ia whose rise time is directly measured without using light curve templates, and the fifth SN Ia overall. This rise time is consistent with those of the other four SNe within the measurement error, even including the extremely early detection of SN 2013dy. The rising part of the light curve can be fitted by a quadratic function, and shows no sign of a shock-heating component due to the interaction of the ejecta with a companion star. The rise time is significantly longer than that inferred for subluminous SNe such as SN 1991bg, which suggests that a progenitor and/or explosion mechanism of transitional SNe Ia are more similar to normal SNe Ia rather than to subluminous SNe Ia.

Original languageEnglish
Article numberL35
JournalAstrophysical Journal Letters
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2014 Feb 20


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