The first Hubble diagram and cosmological constraints using superluminous supernovae

C. Inserra, M. Sullivan, C. R. Angus, E. MacAulay, R. C. Nichol, M. Smith, C. Frohmaier, C. P. Gutiérrez, M. Vicenzi, A. Möller, D. Brout, P. J. Brown, T. M. Davis, C. B. D'Andrea, L. Galbany, R. Kessler, A. G. Kim, Y. C. Pan, M. Pursiainen, D. ScolnicB. P. Thomas, P. Wiseman, T. M.C. Abbott, J. Annis, S. Avila, E. Bertin, D. Brooks, D. L. Burke, A. Carnero Rosell, M. Carrasco Kind, J. Carretero, F. J. Castander, R. Cawthon, S. Desai, H. T. DIehl, T. F. Eifler, D. A. Finley, B. Flaugher, P. Fosalba, J. Frieman, J. Garcia-Bellido, E. Gaztanaga, D. W. Gerdes, T. Giannantonio, D. Gruen, R. A. Gruendl, J. Gschwend, G. Gutierrez, D. L. Hollowood, K. Honscheid, D. J. James, E. Krause, K. Kuehn, N. Kuropatkin, T. S. Li, C. Lidman, M. Lima, M. A.G. Maia, J. L. Marshall, P. Martini, F. Menanteau, R. Miquel, A. A. Plazas Malagón, A. K. Romer, A. Roodman, M. Sako, E. Sanchez, V. Scarpine, M. Schubnell, S. Serrano, I. Sevilla-Noarbe, M. Soares-Santos, F. Sobreira, E. Suchyta, M. E.C. Swanson, G. Tarle, D. Thomas, D. L. Tucker, V. Vikram, A. R. Walker, Y. Zhang, J. Asorey, J. Calcino, D. Carollo, K. Glazebrook, S. R. Hinton, J. K. Hoormann, G. F. Lewis, R. Sharp, E. Swann, B. E. Tucker

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17 Scopus citations


We present the first Hubble diagram of superluminous supernovae (SLSNe) out to a redshift of two, together with constraints on the matter density, ωM, and the dark energy equation-of-state parameter, w(p/ρ). We build a sample of 20 cosmologically useful SLSNe I based on light curve and spectroscopy quality cuts. We confirm the robustness of the peak-decline SLSN I standardization relation with a larger data set and improved fitting techniques than previous works. We then solve the SLSN model based on the above standardization via minimization of the χ2 computed from a covariance matrix that includes statistical and systematic uncertainties. For a spatially flat Λ cold dark matter (ΛCDM) cosmological model, we find $\Omega{\rm M}=0.38^{+0.24}_{-0.19}$, with an rms of 0.27 mag for the residuals of the distance moduli. For a w0waCDM cosmological model, the addition of SLSNe I to a 'baseline' measurement consisting of Planck temperature together with Type Ia supernovae, results in a small improvement in the constraints of w0 and wa of 4 per cent. We present simulations of future surveys with 868 and 492 SLSNe I (depending on the configuration used) and show that such a sample can deliver cosmological constraints in a flat ΛCDM model with the same precision (considering only statistical uncertainties) as current surveys that use Type Ia supernovae, while providing a factor of 2-3 improvement in the precision of the constraints on the time variation of dark energy, w0 and wa. This paper represents the proof of concept for superluminous supernova cosmology, and demonstrates they can provide an independent test of cosmology in the high-redshift (z > 1) universe.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2535-2549
Number of pages15
JournalMonthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society
Issue number2
StatePublished - 1 Jun 2021


  • cosmology: cosmological parameters
  • cosmology: dark matter
  • transients: supernovae


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