The ultimate fate of the Universe, infinite expansion or a big crunch, can be determined by using the redshifts and distances of very distant supernovae to monitor changes in the expansion rate. We can now find large numbers of these distant supernovae, and measure their redshifts and apparent brightnesses; moreover, recent studies of nearby type Ia supernovae have shown how to determine their intrinsic luminosities- and therefore with their apparent brightnesses obtain their distances. The >50 distant supernovae discovered so far provide a record of changes in the expansion rate over the past several billion years. However, it is necessary to extend this expansion history still farther away (hence further back in time) in order to begin to distinguish the causes of he expansion-rate changes-such as the slowing caused by the gravitational attraction of the Universe's mass density, and the possibly counteracting effect of the cosmological constant. Here we report the most distant spectroscopically confirmed supernova. Spectra and photometry from the largest telescopes on the ground and in space show that this ancient supernova is strikingly similar to nearby, recent type Ia supernovae. When combined with previous measurements of nearer supernovae, these new measurements suggest that we may live in a low-mass-density universe.

We present a measurement of the rate of distant Type la supernovae derived using four large subsets of data from the Supernova Cosmology Project. Within this fiducial sample, which surveyed about 12 deg2, 38 supernovae were detected at redshifts 0.25-0.85. In a spatially flat cosmological model consistent with the results obtained by the Supernova Cosmology Project, we derive a rest-frame Type la supernova rate at a mean redshift z ≃ 0.55 of 1.53-0.25-0.31-0.28-0.32 × 10-4 h 3 Mpc-3 yr-1 or 0.58-0.09-0.09-0.10-0.10 h2 SNu (1 SNu = 1 supernova per century per 1010 LB⊙), where the first uncertainty is statistical and the second includes systematic effects. The dependence of the rate on the assumed cosmological parameters is studied and the redshift dependence of the rate per unit comoving volume is contrasted with local estimates in the context of possible cosmic star formation histories and progenitor models.

This presentation reports on first evidence for a low-mass-density/positive-cosmological-constant universe that will expand forever, based on observations of a set of 40 high-redshift supernovae. The experimental strategy, data sets, and analysis techniques are described.

R-band intensity measurements along the light curve of Type Ia supernovae discovered by the Cosmology Project (SCP) are fitted in brightness to templates allowing a free parameter the time-axis width factor w identically equal to s times (1+z). The data points are then individually aligned in the time-axis, normalized and K-corrected back to the rest frame, after which the nearly 1300 normalized intensity measurements are found to lie on a well-determined common rest-frame B-band curve which we call the "composite curve." The same procedure is applied to 18 low-redshift Calan/Tololo SNe with Z < 0.11; these nearly 300 B-band photometry points are found to lie on the composite curve equally well. The SCP search technique produces several measurements before maximum light for each supernova. We demonstrate that the linear stretch factor, s, which parameterizes the light-curve timescale appears independent of z, and applies equally well to the declining and rising parts of the light curve. In fact, the B band template that best fits this composite curve fits the individual supernova photometry data when stretched by a factor s with chi 2/DoF ~;~; 1, thus as well as any parameterization can, given the current data sets. The measurement of the data of explosion, however, is model dependent and not tightly constrained by the current data. We also demonstrate the 1 + z light-cure time-axis broadening expected from cosmological expansion. This argues strongly against alternative explanations, such as tired light, for the redshift of distant objects.

We report measurements of the mass density, Omega_M, and
cosmological-constant energy density, Omega_Lambda, of the universe based on
the analysis of 42 Type Ia supernovae discovered by the Supernova Cosmology
Project. The magnitude-redshift data for these SNe, at redshifts between 0.18
and 0.83, are fit jointly with a set of SNe from the Calan/Tololo Supernova
Survey, at redshifts below 0.1, to yield values for the cosmological
parameters. All SN peak magnitudes are standardized using a SN Ia lightcurve
width-luminosity relation. The measurement yields a joint probability
distribution of the cosmological parameters that is approximated by the
relation 0.8 Omega_M - 0.6 Omega_Lambda ~= -0.2 +/- 0.1 in the region of
interest (Omega_M <~ 1.5). For a flat (Omega_M + Omega_Lambda = 1) cosmology we
find Omega_M = 0.28{+0.09,-0.08} (1 sigma statistical) {+0.05,-0.04}
(identified systematics). The data are strongly inconsistent with a Lambda = 0
flat cosmology, the simplest inflationary universe model. An open, Lambda = 0
cosmology also does not fit the data well: the data indicate that the
cosmological constant is non-zero and positive, with a confidence of P(Lambda >
0) = 99%, including the identified systematic uncertainties. The best-fit age
of the universe relative to the Hubble time is t_0 = 14.9{+1.4,-1.1} (0.63/h)
Gyr for a flat cosmology. The size of our sample allows us to perform a variety
of statistical tests to check for possible systematic errors and biases. We
find no significant differences in either the host reddening distribution or
Malmquist bias between the low-redshift Calan/Tololo sample and our
high-redshift sample. The conclusions are robust whether or not a
width-luminosity relation is used to standardize the SN peak magnitudes.

We report measurements of ΩM, ΩΛ nd w from 11 supernovae (SNe) at z = 0.36-0.86 with high-quality light curves measured using WFPC2 on the Hubble Space Telescope (HST). This is an independent set of high-redshift SNe that confirms previous SN evidence for an accelerating universe. The high-quality light curves available from photometry on WFPC2 make it possible for these 11 SNe alone to provide measurements of the cosmological parameters comparable in statistical weight to the previous results. Combined with earlier Supernova Cosmology Project data, the new SNe yield a measurement of the mass density ΩM = 0.25 -0.06+0.07 (statistical) ± 0.04 (identified systematics), or equivalently, a cosmological constant of ± = 0.75 -0.07+0.06 (statistical) ± 0.04 (identified systematics), under the assumptions of a flat universe and that the dark energy equation-of-state parameter has a constant value w = -1. When the SN results are combined with independent flat-universe measurements of ΩM from cosmic microwave background and galaxy redshift distortion data, they provide a measurement of w = -1.05-0.20+0.15 (statistical) ± 0.09 (identified systematic), if w is assumed to be constant in time. In addition to high-precision light-curve measurements, the new data offer greatly improved color measurements of the high-redshift SNe and hence improved host galaxy extinction estimates. These extinction measurements show no anomalous negative E(B-V) at high redshift. The precision of the measurements is such that it is possible to perform a host galaxy extinction correction directly for individual SNe without any assumptions or priors on the parent E(B-V) distribution. Our cosmological fits using full extinction corrections confirm that dark energy is required with P(ΩΛ > 0) > 0.99, a result consistent with previous and current SN analyses that rely on the identification of a low-extinction subset or prior assumptions concerning the intrinsic extinction distribution.

In the next decade Type Ia supernovae (SNe Ia) will be used to test theories
predicting changes in the Dark Energy equation of state with time. Ultimately
this requires a dedicated space mission like JDEM. SNe Ia are mature
cosmological probes --- their limitations are well characterized, and a path to
improvement is clear. Dominant systematic errors include photometric
calibration, selection effects, reddening, and population-dependent
differences. Building on past lessons, well-controlled new surveys are poised
to make strides in these areas: the Palomar Transient Factory, Skymapper, La
Silla QUEST, Pan-STARRS, the Dark Energy Survey, LSST, and JDEM. They will
obviate historical calibrations and selection biases, and allow comparisons via
large subsamples. Some systematics follow from our ignorance of SN Ia
progenitors, which there is hope of determining with SN Ia rate studies from
0

We present new results on the Hubble diagram of distant type Ia supernovae (SNe Ia) segregated according to the type of host galaxy. This makes it possible to check earlier evidence for a cosmological constant by explicitly comparing SNe residing in galaxies likely to contain negligible dust with the larger sample. The cosmological parameters derived from these SNe Ia hosted by presumed dust-free early-type galaxies support earlier claims for a cosmological constant, which we demonstrate at ≃5σ significance, and the internal extinction implied is small even for late-type systems (A B < 0.2). Thus, our data demonstrate that host galaxy extinction is unlikely to systematically dim distant SNe Ia in a manner that would produce a spurious cosmological constant. Our analysis is based on new Hubble Space Telescope STIS 'snapshot' images and Keck-II echellette spectroscopy at the locations of the SNe, spanning the redshift range 0 < z < 0.8. Selecting from the sample discovered by the Supernova Cosmology Project (SCP), we classify the host galaxies of 39 distant SNe using the combination of STIS imaging, Keck spectroscopy and ground-based broad-band photometry. The distant data are analysed in comparison with a low-redshift sample of 25 SNe Ia re-calibrated according to the precepts of the SCP. The scatter observed in the SNe Ia Hubble diagrams correlates closely with host galaxy morphology. We find this scatter is smallest for SNe Ia occurring in early-type hosts and largest for those occurring in late-type galaxies. Moreover, SNe residing in late-type hosts appear ≃0.14 ± 0.09 mag fainter in their light-curve-width-corrected luminosity than those in early-type hosts, as expected if a modest amount of dust extinction is a contributing factor. As in previous studies, these results are broadly independent of whether corrections based upon SN light-curve shapes are performed. We also use our high-redshift data set to search for morphological dependences in the SNe light curves, as are sometimes seen in lowredshift samples. No significant trends are found, possibly because the range of light-curve widths is too limited.