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Improving Cosmological Distance Measurements Using Twin Type Ia Supernovae

Abstract : We introduce a method for identifying "twin" Type Ia supernovae, and using them to improve distance measurements. This novel approach to Type Ia supernova standardization is made possible by spectrophotometric time series observations from the Nearby Supernova Factory (SNfactory). We begin with a well-measured set of supernovae, find pairs whose spectra match well across the entire optical window, and then test whether this leads to a smaller dispersion in their absolute brightnesses. This analysis is completed in a blinded fashion, ensuring that decisions made in implementing the method do not inadvertently bias the result. We find that pairs of supernovae with more closely matched spectra indeed have reduced brightness dispersion. We are able to standardize this initial set of SNfactory supernovae to 0.083 +/- 0.012 magnitudes, implying a dispersion of 0.072 +/- 0.010 magnitudes in the absence of peculiar velocities. We estimate that with larger numbers of comparison SNe, e.g, using the final SNfactory spectrophotometric dataset as a reference, this method will be capable of standardizing high-redshift supernovae to within 0.06-0.07 magnitudes. These results imply that at least 3/4 of the variance in Hubble residuals in current supernova cosmology analyses is due to previously unaccounted-for astrophysical differences among the supernovae
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Contributor : Dominique Girod <>
Submitted on : Tuesday, November 10, 2015 - 1:40:25 PM
Last modification on : Saturday, April 11, 2020 - 1:52:39 AM

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H. K. Fakhouri, K. Boone, G. Aldering, P. Antilogus, C. Aragon, et al.. Improving Cosmological Distance Measurements Using Twin Type Ia Supernovae. The Astrophysical Journal, American Astronomical Society, 2015, 815, pp.58. ⟨10.1088/0004-637X/815/1/58⟩. ⟨in2p3-01226913⟩



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