Extensive light and colour curves for the Type Ia supernova (SN Ia) SN 2002er are presented as part of the European Supernova Collaboration. We have collected UBVRI photometry from 11 different telescopes covering the phases from 7 d before until 619 d after maximum light. Corrections for the different instrumental systems and the non-thermal spectrum of the supernova (S-corrections) have been applied. With the densely sampled light curves we can make detailed comparisons to other well-observed objects. SN 2002er most closely resembles SN 1996X after maximum, but clearly shows a different colour evolution before peak light and a stronger shoulder in V and R bands compared to other well-observed SNe Ia. In particular, the rise time appears to be longer than what is expected from the rise time versus decline rate relation. We use several methods to determine the reddening towards SN 2002er based on the colour evolution at near peak and at late phases. The uvoir (bolometric) light curve shows great similarity with SN 1996X, but also indications of a higher luminosity, longer rise time and a more pronounced shoulder 25 d past maximum. The interpretation of the light curves was carried out with two independent light curve codes. Both find that given the luminosity of SN 2002er the Ni-56 mass exceeds 0.6 M-circle dot with preferred values near 0.7 M-circle dot. Uncertainties in the exact distance to SN 2002er are the most serious limitation of this measurement. The light-curve modelling also indicates a high level of mixing of the nickel in the explosion of SN 2002er.
- Space and Planetary Science