Skip to main content

Thank you for visiting You are using a browser version with limited support for CSS. To obtain the best experience, we recommend you use a more up to date browser (or turn off compatibility mode in Internet Explorer). In the meantime, to ensure continued support, we are displaying the site without styles and JavaScript.


Progenitors of type Ia supernovae


A study of the remains of a type Ia supernova whose light swept past Earth about 400 years ago finds no sign of a companion star. The result indicates that the supernova's progenitor was a pair of white dwarfs. See Letter p.164

This is a preview of subscription content

Access options

Buy article

Get time limited or full article access on ReadCube.


All prices are NET prices.

Figure 1: Supernova remnant SNR 0509–67.5.



  1. Perlmutter, S. et al. Astrophys. J. 517, 565–586 (1999).

    ADS  Article  Google Scholar 

  2. Riess, A. G. et al. Astron. J. 116, 1009–1038 (1998).

    ADS  Article  Google Scholar 

  3. Schaefer, B. E. & Pagnotta, A. Nature 481, 164–166 (2012).

    ADS  CAS  Article  Google Scholar 

  4. Ruiz-Lapuente, P. et al. Nature 431, 1069–1072 (2004).

    ADS  CAS  Article  Google Scholar 

  5. Marietta, E., Burrows, A. & Fryxell, B. Astrophys. J. Suppl. 128, 615–650 (2000).

    ADS  CAS  Article  Google Scholar 

  6. González Hernández, J. I. et al. Astrophys. J. 691, 1–15 (2009).

    ADS  Article  Google Scholar 

  7. Kerzendorf, W. E. et al. Astrophys. J. 701, 1665–1672 (2009).

    ADS  CAS  Article  Google Scholar 

  8. Kasen, D. Astrophys. J. 708, 1025–1031 (2010).

    ADS  Article  Google Scholar 

  9. Patat, F. et al. Astron. Astrophys. 530, A63 (2011).

    Article  Google Scholar 

  10. Pakmor, R., Hachinger, S., Röpke, F. K. & Hillebrandt, W. Astron. Astrophys. 528, A117 (2011).

    ADS  Article  Google Scholar 

  11. Hachisu, I., Kato, M. & Nomoto, K. Astrophys. J. 679, 1390–1404 (2008).

    ADS  CAS  Article  Google Scholar 

Download references

Author information

Authors and Affiliations


Corresponding author

Correspondence to Pilar Ruiz-Lapuente.

Rights and permissions

Reprints and Permissions

About this article

Cite this article

Ruiz-Lapuente, P. Progenitors of type Ia supernovae. Nature 481, 149–150 (2012).

Download citation

  • Published:

  • Issue Date:

  • DOI:


Quick links

Nature Briefing

Sign up for the Nature Briefing newsletter — what matters in science, free to your inbox daily.

Get the most important science stories of the day, free in your inbox. Sign up for Nature Briefing