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IAUC 6623: 1997br; 1997bq; 1997bp

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                                                 Circular No. 6623
Central Bureau for Astronomical Telegrams
Mailstop 18, Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory, Cambridge, MA 02138, U.S.A.
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SUPERNOVA 1997br IN ESO 576-40
     The Beijing Astronomical Observatory (BAO) Supernova Survey
(cf. IAUC 6612) reports the discovery on Apr. 10.6 UT with the 0.6-
m BAO reflector (+ unfiltered CCD) of a supernova (mag about 14.5)
located at R.A. = 13h20m42s.40, Decl. = -22o02'12".3 (equinox
2000.0), which is 20".6 west and 51".6 north of the nucleus of ESO
576-40 = PGC 46574.  Unfiltered CCD images of the same field taken
on Jan. 8 (limiting mag about 18.0) show no star at this position.
Similar images taken on Apr. 11.6 show that SN 1997br had
brightened to mag 14.2.  A Low-resolution spectrogram (20 nm/mm,
range 370--840 nm), obtained by Q.-y. Qiao, H. Wu, J.-y. Wei, and
W.-d. Li (BAO) with the BAO 2.16-m telescope at Xinglong station,
shows this to be a peculiar type-Ia supernova prior to optical
maximum.  The spectrum is rather blue, with the whole appearance
similar to SN 1991T prior to optical maximum.  There is only very
weak Si II 635-nm absorption at 628 nm.  Other features include Ca
II, Mg II, Si II, and S II lines, with the minima measured at 396,
427, 497, and 572 nm, respectively.  There is conspicuous host-
galactic Na II absorption at 591.8 nm (equivalent width about 0.067
nm), showing that the supernova is reddened by the host galaxy.
The expansion velocity of the supernova envelope is measured to be
about 12 000 km/s, as derived from the Si II absorption at 497.2
nm.  The redshift of the host galaxy is about 2280 km/s, from the
narrow H-alpha line and the Na II host-galactic absorption line.

SUPERNOVA 1997bq IN NGC 3147
     P. Garnavich and R. Kirshner, Center for Astrophysics, report
that CCD images of SN 1997bq taken by N. Grogin and D. Moraru with
the Whipple Observatory's 1.2-m telescope between Apr. 8 and 11
show that it has brightened by 0.7 mag.  This indicates the
supernova is still well before maximum and may reach V = 14.5.  The
estimated magnitude on Apr. 11.3 UT was V = 15.3.

SUPERNOVA 1997bp IN NGC 4680
     R. Evans, Coonabarabran, N.S.W., reports a 0.2-mag visual
brightening of this supernova between Apr. 7.5 and 9.5 UT.
Additional visual magnitude estimate by L. Kiss, Szeged, Hungary:
Apr. 9.85 UT, 13.9.

                      (C) Copyright 1997 CBAT
1997 April 11                  (6623)            Daniel W. E. Green

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