Measuring Dark Energy with Supernova and Active Galactic Nuclei

Understanding systematic issues in the probes of dark energy is a large area of study. However, different distance techniques to the same galaxies offer a unique chance to get a handle on these systematic issues, provide a constraint on dark energy, and learn some interesting physics along the way. This project would use both type Ia supernova and reverberation mapping (measuring the time lags of active galactic nuclei (AGN)) in the same galaxies to do just that. With now over 1000 AGN reverberation mapping sources, a number of supernova will occur in these same galaxies. This project will use both past data to look for supernova as well as run a new search using the SkyMapper Telescope at Siding Spring, the ANU Siding Spring 2.3m telescope, as well as facilities in Chile to look for supernova in these galaxies and monitor the black holes in them. Students will be able to learn machine learning techniques, gain observational experience, and help constrain the nature of dark energy, the substance that makes up about 70% of the Universe.