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BAA Journal 2013 October

The lightcurve of supernova 2011fe in M101

Journal issue: 2013 October
Pages: 263–268

Unfiltered CCD observations acquired remotely using the MicroObservatory Robotic Telescope Network, covering the first 200 days following the explosion of the Type Ia SN 2011fe, are presented. The date of the explosion is estimated to have been UT 2011 August 23 19:55 (JD 2455797.33) giving a rise time to maximum light of 19.01 ±0.96 days. With a peak absolute magnitude of between -18.8 and -19.2 (depending on the distance modulus to M101), the mass of 56Ni synthesized in the thermonuclear explosion is estimated to be at least between 0.6 and 0.9 M-Sun. Comparisons with earlier observations of the Type IIb SN 2011dh highlight the differences between the two types of SN event and illustrate the utility of the MicroObservatory network as a tool for amateur astronomical research.