We present 126 photometric and 30 spectral observations of SN 1990E spanning from 12 days before B maximum to 600 days past discovery. These observations show that SN 1990E was of type H-P, displaying hydrogen in its spectrum, and the characteristic plateau in its light curve. SN 1990E is one of the few SNe II which has been well observed before maximum light, and we present evidence that this SN was discovered very soon after its explosion. In the earliest spectra we identify, for the first time, several N II lines. We present a new technique for measuring extinction to SNe II based on the evolution of absorption lines, and use this method to estimate the extinction to SN 1990E, AV = 1.5 ± 0.3 mag. From our photometric data we have constructed a bolometric light curve for SN 1990E and show that, even at the earliest times, the bolometric luminosity was falling rapidly. We use the late-time bolometric light curve to show that SN 1990E trapped a majority of the gamma rays produced by the radioactive decay of 56Co, and estimate that SN 1990E ejected 0.073+0.018-0.051 script M sign⊙ of 56Ni, an amount virtually identical to that of SN 1987A.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Astronomy and Astrophysics
- Space and Planetary Science