Date of Award

Spring 2021

Document Type

Open Access Dissertation


Physics and Astronomy

First Advisor

Steven Rodney


Supernova (SN) research has been the source of many astronomical discoveries over the past several decades, most prominently the accelerated expansion of the universe by so-called “dark energy” in 1998. Next generation surveys like the Vera C. Rubin Observatory and the Nancy G. Roman Space Telescope, in large part through traditional luminosity distance measurements with Type Ia supernovae (SNe Ia), are set to reveal more about the nature of dark energy this decade than at any time in history. The enormous SN Ia samples from Roman and Rubin mean cosmological inferences will no longer be limited by statistical uncertainties, making “limiting systematics” the name of the game for 2020’s dark energy programs. This research addresses SN cosmology systematic uncertainties in three ways: 1) Extending widely used models of optical SN light curves into the near-IR wavelengths probed by future telescopes 2) Modeling systematics inherent to the observed SN Ia population and 3) Developing lensed SNe as a new and independent dark energy probe for the next decade. Together these complementary components have already supported multiple cosmological analyses, including projections for lensed SN and SNIa cosmology with Roman. They are also being used to optimize future surveys, and have contributed to the first measurement of the Hubble constant with a lensed SN.


© 2021, Justin Roberts-Pierel

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