The peculiar Type Ib supernova (SN) 2006jc has been observed with the UV/Optical Telescope (UVOT) and X-Ray Telescope (XRT) on board the Swift observatory over a period of 19-183 days after the explosion. Signatures of interaction of the outgoing SN shock with dense circumstellar material (CSM) are detected, such as strong X-ray emission (L0.2.10 > 10 39 erg s-1) and the presence of Mg ii 2800 Å line emission visible in the UV spectra. In combination with a Chandra observation obtained on day 40 after the explosion, the X-ray light curve is constructed, which shows a unique rise of the X-ray emission by a factor of ∼5 over a period of ∼4 months, followed by a rapid decline. We interpret the unique X-ray and UV properties as a result of the SN shock interacting with a shell of material that was deposited by an outburst of the SN progenitor 2 years prior to the explosion. Our results are consistent with the explosion of a Wolf-Rayet star that underwent an episodic mass ejection qualitatively similar to those of luminous blue variable stars prior to its explosion. This led to the formation of a dense (∼107 cm-3) shell at a distance of ∼1016 cm from the site of the explosion, which expands with the WR wind at a velocity of. 1300 ± 300 km s-1.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Astronomy and Astrophysics
- Space and Planetary Science