A Comprehensive Optical Search for Pre-explosion Outbursts from the Quiescent Progenitor of SN 2023ixf

Yize Dong, David J. Sand, Stefano Valenti, K. Azalee Bostroem, Jennifer E. Andrews, Griffin Hosseinzadeh, Emily Hoang, Daryl Janzen, Jacob E. Jencson, Michael Lundquist, Nicolas E. Meza Retamal, Jeniveve Pearson, Manisha Shrestha, Joshua Haislip, Vladimir Kouprianov, Daniel E. Reichart

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Scopus citations


We perform a comprehensive search for optical precursor emission at the position of SN 2023ixf using data from the DLT40, ZTF, and ATLAS surveys. By comparing the current data set with precursor outburst hydrodynamical model light curves, we find that the probability of a significant outburst within 5 yr of explosion is low, and the circumstellar material (CSM) ejected during any possible precursor outburst is likely smaller than ∼0.015M . By comparing to a set of toy models, we find that, if there was a precursor outburst, the duration must have been shorter than ∼100 days for a typical brightness of M r ≃ −9 mag or shorter than 200 days for M r ≃ −8 mag; brighter, longer outbursts would have been discovered. Precursor activity like that observed in the normal Type II SN 2020tlf (M r ≃ −11.5) can be excluded in SN 2023ixf. If the dense CSM inferred by early flash spectroscopy and other studies is related to one or more precursor outbursts, then our observations indicate that any such outburst would have to be faint and only last for days to months, or it occurred more than 5 yr prior to the explosion. Alternatively, any dense, confined CSM may not be due to eruptive mass loss from a single red supergiant progenitor. Taken together, the results of SN 2023ixf and SN 2020tlf indicate that there may be more than one physical mechanism behind the dense CSM inferred around some normal Type II supernovae.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number28
JournalAstrophysical Journal
Issue number1
StatePublished - Nov 1 2023

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Astronomy and Astrophysics
  • Space and Planetary Science


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