Infrared Surface Brightness Fluctuation Distances for MASSIVE and Type Ia Supernova Host Galaxies* Academic Article uri icon


  • Abstract We measured high-quality surface brightness fluctuation (SBF) distances for a sample of 63 massive early-type galaxies using the WFC3/IR camera on the Hubble Space Telescope. The median uncertainty on the SBF distance measurements is 0.085 mag, or 3.9% in distance. Achieving this precision at distances of 50100 Mpc required significant improvements to the SBF calibration and data analysis procedures for WFC3/IR data. Forty-two of the galaxies are from the MASSIVE Galaxy Survey, a complete sample of massive galaxies within 100 Mpc; the SBF distances for these will be used to improve the estimates of the stellar and central supermassive black hole masses in these galaxies. Twenty-four of the galaxies are Type Ia supernova hosts, useful for calibrating SN Ia distances for early-type galaxies and exploring possible systematic trends in the peak luminosities. Our results demonstrate that the SBF method is a powerful and versatile technique for measuring distances to galaxies with evolved stellar populations out to 100 Mpc and constraining the local value of the Hubble constant.

published proceedings


altmetric score

  • 8.33

author list (cited authors)

  • Jensen, J. B., Blakeslee, J. P., Ma, C., Milne, P. A., Brown, P. J., Cantiello, M., ... Wood, C. M.

citation count

  • 12

complete list of authors

  • Jensen, Joseph B||Blakeslee, John P||Ma, Chung-Pei||Milne, Peter A||Brown, Peter J||Cantiello, Michele||Garnavich, Peter M||Greene, Jenny E||Lucey, John R||Phan, Anh||Tully, R Brent||Wood, Charlotte M

publication date

  • August 2021