Dr. Weidong Li (UC Berkeley) visit our group and give colloquium speech

Oct 21, 2011

“The Lick Observatory Supernova Search (LOSS) and SN 2011fe in M101”


The Lick Observatory Supernova Search (LOSS), using the robotic 30-inch Katzman Automatic Imaging Telescope (KAIT), has discovered over 800 SNe in the past decade, and is one of the most successful nearby SN searches. There are two parts in this talk. (I) a brief summary of LOSS and its  scientific results. 

In particular, I will focus on our recently published  series of papers on the derivation of the nearby SN rates from our search.  I will talk about the properties of our sample galaxies, the derivation of the luminosity functions of SNe from a complete sample, and the correlations between SN rates and their host galaxy properties. (II) a report on the constraints on the progenitor system of the bright SN Ia 2011fe in M101, a SN not discovered by LOSS. The deep archival HST data, together with our decade-long monitoring history of M101, favor a scenario where the exploding white dwarf of SN 2011fe accreted matter either from another white dwarf, or by Roche-lobe overflow from a subgiant or main-sequence star.