Chandra X-ray constraints on the candidate Ca-rich gap transient SN 2016hnk

P. H. Sell, K. Arur, T. J. MacCarone, R. Kotak, C. Knigge, D. J. Sand, S. Valenti

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10 Scopus citations


We present a Chandra observation of SN 2016hnk, a candidate Ca-rich gap transient. This observation was specifically designed to test whether or not this transient was the result of the tidal detonation of a white dwarf by an intermediate-mass black hole. Since we detect no X-ray emission 28 d after the discovery of the transient, as predicted from fall-back accretion, we rule out this model. Our upper limit of ~10M· does not allow us to rule out a neutron star or stellar-mass black hole detonator due limits on the sensitivity of Chandra to soft X-rays and unconstrained variables tied to the structure of super-Eddington accretion discs. Together with other Chandra and multiwavelength observations, our analysis strongly argues against the intermediate-mass black hole tidal detonation scenario for Ca-rich gap transients more generally.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)L111-L115
JournalMonthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society: Letters
Issue number1
StatePublished - Mar 1 2018


  • Accretion: Accretion discs
  • Binaries: Close
  • White dwarfs

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Astronomy and Astrophysics
  • Space and Planetary Science


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