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Reliability Checks on the Indo-US Stellar Spectral Library Using Artificial Neural Networks and Principal Component Analysis
The Indo-US coudé feed stellar spectral library (CFLIB) madeavailable to the astronomical community recently by Valdes et al. (2004,ApJS, 152, 251) contains spectra of 1273 stars in the spectral region3460 to 9464Å at a high resolution of 1Å (FWHM) and a widerange of spectral types. Cross-checking the reliability of this databaseis an important and desirable exercise since a number of stars in thisdatabase have no known spectral types and a considerable fraction ofstars has not so complete coverage in the full wavelength region of3460-9464Å resulting in gaps ranging from a few Å to severaltens of Å. We use an automated classification scheme based onArtificial Neural Networks (ANN) to classify all 1273 stars in thedatabase. In addition, principal component analysis (PCA) is carried outto reduce the dimensionality of the data set before the spectra areclassified by the ANN. Most importantly, we have successfullydemonstrated employment of a variation of the PCA technique to restorethe missing data in a sample of 300 stars out of the CFLIB.

B-type supergiants in the Small Magellanic Cloud: rotational velocities and implications for evolutionary models
High-resolution spectra for 24 SMC and Galactic B-type supergiants havebeen analysed to estimate the contributions of both macroturbulence androtation to the broadening of their metal lines. Two differentmethodologies are considered, viz. goodness-of-fit comparisons betweenobserved and theoretical line profiles and identifying zeros in theFourier transforms of the observed profiles. The advantages andlimitations of the two methods are briefly discussed with the lattertechniques being adopted for estimating projected rotational velocities(v sin i) but the former being used to estimate macroturbulentvelocities. The projected rotational velocity estimates range fromapproximately 20 to 60 km s-1, apart from one SMC supergiant,Sk 191, with a v sin i ≃ 90 km s-1. Apart from Sk 191,the distribution of projected rotational velocities as a function ofspectral type are similar in both our Galactic and SMC samples withlarger values being found at earlier spectral types. There is marginalevidence for the projected rotational velocities in the SMC being higherthan those in the Galactic targets but any differences are only of theorder of 5-10 km s-1, whilst evolutionary models predictdifferences in this effective temperature range of typically 20 to 70 kms-1. The combined sample is consistent with a linearvariation of projected rotational velocity with effective temperature,which would imply rotational velocities for supergiants of 70 kms-1 at an effective temperature of 28 000 K (approximately B0spectral type) decreasing to 32 km s-1 at 12 000 K (B8spectral type). For all targets, the macroturbulent broadening wouldappear to be consistent with a Gaussian distribution (although otherdistributions cannot be discounted) with an 1/e half-width varying fromapproximately 20 km s-1 at B8 to 60 km s-1 at B0spectral types.

Physical parameters and wind properties of galactic early B supergiants
We present optical studies of the physical and wind properties, plus CNOchemical abundances, of 25 O9.5-B3 Galactic supergiants. We employnon-LTE, line blanketed, extended model atmospheres, which provide amodest downward revision in the effective temperature scale of early Bsupergiants of up to 1-2 kK relative to previous non-blanketed results.The so-called "bistability jump" at B1 (Teff ˜ 21 kK)from Lamers et al. is rather a more gradual trend (with large scatter)from v&infy;/vesc˜3.4 for B0-0.5 supergiantsabove 24 kK to v&infy;/vesc˜ 2.5 for B0.7-1supergiants with 20 kK ≤ Teff ≤ 24 kK, andv&infy;/vesc˜ 1.9 for B1.5-3 supergiants below20 kK. This, in part, explains the break in observed UV spectralcharacteristics between B0.5 and B0.7 subtypes as discussed by Walbornet al. We compare derived (homogeneous) wind densities with recentresults for Magellanic Cloud B supergiants and generally confirmtheoretical expectations for stronger winds amongst Galacticsupergiants. However, winds are substantially weaker than predictionsfrom current radiatively driven wind theory, especially at mid-Bsubtypes, a problem which is exacerbated if winds are already clumped inthe Hα line forming region. In general, CNO elemental abundancesreveal strongly processed material at the surface of Galactic Bsupergiants, with mean N/C and N/O abundances 10 and 5 times higher thanthe Solar value, respectively, with HD 2905 (BC0.7 Ia) indicating thelowest degree of processing in our sample, and HD 152236 (B1.5Ia+) the highest.

Correlation patterns between 11 diffuse interstellar bands and ultraviolet extinction
We relate the equivalent widths of 11 diffuse interstellar bands,measured in the spectra of 49 stars, to different colour excesses in theultraviolet. We find that most of the observed bands correlatepositively with the extinction in the neighbourhood of the2175-Åbump. Correlation with colour excesses in other parts of theextinction curve is more variable from one diffuse interstellar band toanother; we find that some diffuse bands (5797, 5850 and 6376 Å)correlate positively with the overall slope of the extinction curve,while others (5780 and 6284 Å) exhibit negative correlation. Wediscuss the implications of these results on the links between thediffuse interstellar band carriers and the properties of theinterstellar grains.

CHARM2: An updated Catalog of High Angular Resolution Measurements
We present an update of the Catalog of High Angular ResolutionMeasurements (CHARM, Richichi & Percheron \cite{CHARM}, A&A,386, 492), which includes results available until July 2004. CHARM2 is acompilation of direct measurements by high angular resolution methods,as well as indirect estimates of stellar diameters. Its main goal is toprovide a reference list of sources which can be used for calibrationand verification observations with long-baseline optical and near-IRinterferometers. Single and binary stars are included, as are complexobjects from circumstellar shells to extragalactic sources. The presentupdate provides an increase of almost a factor of two over the previousedition. Additionally, it includes several corrections and improvements,as well as a cross-check with the valuable public release observationsof the ESO Very Large Telescope Interferometer (VLTI). A total of 8231entries for 3238 unique sources are now present in CHARM2. Thisrepresents an increase of a factor of 3.4 and 2.0, respectively, overthe contents of the previous version of CHARM.The catalog is only available in electronic form at the CDS viaanonymous ftp to cdsarc.u-strasbg.fr ( or via http://cdsweb.u-strasbg.fr/cgi-bin/qcat?J/A+A/431/773

Hydrogen in the atmosphere of the evolved WN3 Wolf-Rayet star WR 3: defying an evolutionary paradigm?
WR 3 is the brightest very early-type WN star in the sky. Based onseveral years of time-resolved spectroscopy and precision photometry onvarious time-scales, we deduce that WR 3 is most likely a single,weak-lined star of type WN3ha (contrary to its current catalogue-type ofWN3 + O4), with H lines occurring both in emission and absorption in itswind. This conclusion is confirmed and strengthened via detailedmodelling of the spectrum of WR 3. Given the similarity of WR 3 withnumerous H-rich WNE stars in the Large Magellanic Cloud and especiallythe Small Magellanic Cloud, and its location towards the metal-deficientexterior of the Galaxy, we conclude that rotationally induced meridionalcirculation probably led to the apparently unusual formation of this hotGalactic WN star with enhanced hydrogen. Although we cannot completelyrule out the possibility of a binary with a low orbital inclinationand/or long period, we regard this latter possibility as highlyunlikely.

Large-scale wind structures in OB supergiants: a search for rotationally modulated Hα variability
We present the results of a long-term monitoring campaign of theHα line in a sample of bright OB supergiants (O7.5-B9) which aimsat detecting rotationally modulated changes potentially related to theexistence of large-scale wind structures. A total of 22 objects weremonitored during 36 nights spread over six months in 2001-2002.Coordinated broad-band photometric observations were also obtained forsome targets. Conspicuous evidence for variability in Hα is foundfor the stars displaying a feature contaminated by wind emission. Mostchanges take place on a daily time-scale, although hourly variations arealso occasionally detected. Convincing evidence for a cyclical patternof variability in Hα has been found in two stars: HD 14134 and HD42087. Periodic signals are also detected in other stars, butindependent confirmation is required. Rotational modulation is suggestedfrom the similarity between the observed recurrence time-scales (in therange 13-25 d) and estimated periods of stellar rotation. We callattention to the atypical case of HD 14134, which exhibits a clear12.8-d periodicity, both in the photometric and in the spectroscopicdata sets. This places this object among a handful of early-type starswhere one may observe a clear link between extended wind structures andphotospheric disturbances. Further modelling may test the hypothesisthat azimuthally-extended wind streams are responsible for the patternsof spectral variability in our target stars.

The Indo-US Library of Coudé Feed Stellar Spectra
We have obtained spectra for 1273 stars using the 0.9 m coudéfeed telescope at Kitt Peak National Observatory. This telescope feedsthe coudé spectrograph of the 2.1 m telescope. The spectra havebeen obtained with the no. 5 camera of the coudé spectrograph anda Loral 3K×1K CCD. Two gratings have been used to provide spectralcoverage from 3460 to 9464 Å, at a resolution of ~1 Å FWHMand at an original dispersion of 0.44 Å pixel-1. For885 stars we have complete spectra over the entire 3460 to 9464 Åwavelength region (neglecting small gaps of less than 50 Å), andpartial spectral coverage for the remaining stars. The 1273 stars havebeen selected to provide broad coverage of the atmospheric parametersTeff, logg, and [Fe/H], as well as spectral type. The goal ofthe project is to provide a comprehensive library of stellar spectra foruse in the automated classification of stellar and galaxy spectra and ingalaxy population synthesis. In this paper we discuss thecharacteristics of the spectral library, viz., details of theobservations, data reduction procedures, and selection of stars. We alsopresent a few illustrations of the quality and information available inthe spectra. The first version of the complete spectral library is nowpublicly available from the National Optical Astronomy Observatory(NOAO) via ftp and http.

Toward an adequate method to isolate spectroscopic families of diffuse interstellar bands
We divide some of the observed diffuse interstellar bands (DIBs) intofamilies that appear to have the spectral structure of single species.Three different methods are applied to separate such families, exploringthe best approach for future investigations of this type. Starting witha statistical treatment of the data, we found that statistical methodsby themselves give insufficient results. Two other methods of dataanalysis (`averaging equivalent widths' and `investigating the figureswith arranged spectrograms') were found to be more useful as tools forfinding the spectroscopic families of DIBs. On the basis of thesemethods, we suggest some candidates as `relatives' of 5780- and5797-Å bands.

High-Resolution Observations of Interstellar Ca I Absorption-Implications for Depletions and Electron Densities in Diffuse Clouds
We present high-resolution (FWHM~0.3-1.5 km s-1) spectra,obtained with the AAT UHRF, the McDonald Observatory 2.7 m coudéspectrograph, and/or the KPNO coudé feed, of interstellar Ca Iabsorption toward 30 Galactic stars. Comparisons of the column densitiesof Ca I, Ca II, K I, and other species-for individual componentsidentified in the line profiles and also when integrated over entirelines of sight-yield information on relative electron densities anddepletions (dependent on assumptions regarding the ionizationequilibrium). There is no obvious relationship between the ratio N(CaI)/N(Ca II) [equal to ne/(Γ/αr) forphotoionization equilibrium] and the fraction of hydrogen in molecularform f(H2) (often taken to be indicative of the local densitynH). For a smaller sample of sight lines for which thethermal pressure (nHT) and local density can be estimated viaanalysis of the C I fine-structure excitation, the average electrondensity inferred from C, Na, and K (assuming photoionizationequilibrium) seems to be independent of nH andnHT. While the electron density (ne) obtained fromthe ratio N(Ca I)/N(Ca II) is often significantly higher than the valuesderived from other elements, the patterns of relative nederived from different elements show both similarities and differencesfor different lines of sight-suggesting that additional processesbesides photoionization and radiative recombination commonly andsignificantly affect the ionization balance of heavy elements in diffuseinterstellar clouds. Such additional processes may also contribute tothe (apparently) larger than expected fractional ionizations(ne/nH) found for some lines of sight withindependent determinations of nH. In general, inclusion of``grain-assisted'' recombination does reduce the inferred ne,but it does not reconcile the ne estimated from differentelements; it may, however, suggest some dependence of ne onnH. The depletion of calcium may have a much weakerdependence on density than was suggested by earlier comparisons with CHand CN. Two appendices present similar high-resolution spectra of Fe Ifor a few stars and give a compilation of column density data for Ca I,Ca II, Fe I, and S I.

Observations of Rotationally Resolved C3 in Translucent Sight Lines
The rotationally resolved spectrum of theA1Πu<--X1Σ+g000-000 transition of C3, centered at 4051.6 Å, hasbeen observed along 10 translucent lines of sight. To interpret thesespectra, a new method for the determination of column densities andanalysis of excitation profiles involving the simulation and fitting ofobserved spectra has been developed. The populations of lower rotationallevels (J<=14) in C3 are best fitted by thermaldistributions that are consistent with the kinetic temperaturesdetermined from the excitation profile of C2. Just as in thecase of C2, higher rotational levels (J>14) ofC3 show increased nonthermal population distributions inclouds that have been determined to have total gas densities below ~500cm-3.

The Chemical Composition and Gas-to-Dust Mass Ratio of Nearby Interstellar Matter
We use recent results on interstellar gas toward nearby stars andinterstellar by-products within the solar system to select among theequilibrium radiative transfer models of the nearest interstellarmaterial presented in Slavin & Frisch. For the assumption thatO/H~400 parts per million, models 2 and 8 are found to yield good fitsto available data on interstellar material inside and outside of theheliosphere, with the exception of the Ne abundance in the pickup ionand anomalous cosmic-ray populations. For these models, the interstellarmedium (ISM) at the entry point to the heliosphere hasn(H0)=0.202-0.208 cm-3,n(He0)=0.0137-0.0152 cm-3, and ionizationsχ(H)=0.29-0.30, χ(He)=0.47-0.51. These best models suggest thatthe chemical composition of the nearby ISM is ~60%-70% subsolar if S isundepleted. Both H0 and H+ need to be includedwhen evaluating abundances of ions found in warm diffuse clouds. Models2 and 8 yield an H filtration factor of ~0.46. Gas-to-dust mass ratiosfor the ISM toward ɛ CMa are Rgd=178-183 for solarabundances of Holweger or Rgd=611-657 for an interstellarabundance standard 70% solar. Direct observations of dust grains in thesolar system by Ulysses and Galileo yield Rgd~=115 for models2 and 8, supporting earlier results (Frisch and coworkers). If the localISM abundances are subsolar, then gas and dust are decoupled over smallspatial scales. The inferred variation in Rgd over parseclength scales is consistent with the fact that the ISM near the Sun ispart of a dynamically active cluster of cloudlets flowing away from theSco-Cen association. Observations toward stars within ~500 pc show thatRgd correlates with the percentage of the dust mass that iscarried by iron, suggesting that an Fe-rich grain core (by mass) remainsafter grain destruction. Evidently large dust grains (>10-13g) and small dust grains (<10-13 g) are not well mixedover parsec length spatial scales in the ISM. It also appears that verysmall C-dominated dust grains have been destroyed in the ISM withinseveral parsecs of the Sun, since C appears to be essentiallyundepleted. However, if gas-dust coupling breaks down over the cloudlifetime, the missing mass arguments applied here to determineRgd and dust grain mineralogy are not appropriate.

A Method for Simultaneous Determination of AV and R and Applications
A method for the simultaneous determination of the interstellarextinction (AV) and of the ratio of total to selectiveextinction (R), derived from the 1989 Cardelli, Clayton, & Mathisfitting of the interstellar extinction law, is presented and applied toa set of 1900 color excesses derived from observations of stars inUBVRIJHKL. The method is used to study the stability of AVand R within selected regions in Perseus, Scorpius, Monoceros, Orion,Sagittarius, Ophiuchus, Carina, and Serpens. Analysis shows that R isapproximately constant and peculiar to each sector, with mean valuesthat vary from 3.2 in Perseus to 5.6 in Ophiuchus. These results aresimilar to published values by Aiello et al., He et al., Vrba &Rydgren, O'Donnell, and Cardelli, Clayton, & Mathis.

Some Diffuse Interstellar Bands Related to Interstellar C2 Molecules
We have investigated the correlations between the equivalent widths of21 selected diffuse interstellar bands (DIBs) and the correspondinginterstellar column densities N(C2), N(CN), and N(CH), toward53 stars with color excesses 0.11<=E(B-V)<=1.99. The observationaldata were derived primarily from echelle spectra acquired at R=38,000 aspart of our extensive, continuing survey of the bands. All but six ofthe 53 final spectra show signal-to-noise ratios >=800 at 5780Å. The principal result presented here is that seven of the 21bands prove to be examples of ``the C2 DIBs,'' a class ofweak, narrow bands whose normalized equivalent widthsWλ(X)/Wλ (λ6196) are wellcorrelated specifically with N(C2)/E(B-V) via power laws. Incontrast, the similarly normalized equivalent widths of the 14 other,well-known DIBs analyzed here are uncorrelated, or weaklyanticorrelated, with N(C2)/E(B-V), to within theobservational uncertainties. Thus, the polyatomic molecule(s) presumedto cause these seven C2 DIBs may bear a direct chemicalrelation to C2 that is not shared by the polyatomic moleculesputatively responsible for the other 14 bands. The C2 DIBsalso show positive correlations with N(CN)/E(B-V) and N(CH)/E(B-V) inour particular sample of light paths, although generally with shallowerslopes in the case of N(CN) and with greater scatter in the case ofN(CH). Eleven additional C2 DIBs are also identified but arenot analyzed here. Among the 18 C2 DIBs identified, fourapparently have not been previously detected. The λ4963 band isgenerally the strongest of the 18 C2 DIBs, while theλ4734 band shows the most sensitive correlation withN(C2).Based on observations obtained with the Apache Point Observatory 3.5 mtelescope, which is owned and operated by the Astrophysical ResearchConsortium.

The total-to-selective extinction ratio determined from near IR photometry of OB stars
The paper presents an extensive list of the total to selectiveextinction ratios R calculated from the infrared magnitudes of 597 O andB stars using the extrapolation method. The IR magnitudes of these starswere taken from the literature. The IR colour excesses are determinedwith the aid of "artificial standards" - Wegner (1994). The individualand mean values of total to selective extinction ratios R differ in mostcases from the average value R=3.10 +/-0.05 - Wegner (1993) in differentOB associations. The relation between total to selective extinctionratios R determined in this paper and those calculated using the "methodof variable extinction" and the Cardelli et al. (1989) formulae isdiscussed. The R values presented in this paper can be used to determineindividual absolute magnitudes of reddened OB stars with knowntrigonometric parallaxes.

Macroturbulent and rotational broadening in the spectra of B-type supergiants
The absorption-line spectra of early B-type supergiants show significantbroadening that implies that an additional broadening mechanism(characterized here as `macroturbulence') is present in addition torotational broadening. Using high-resolution spectra withsignal-to-noise ratios of typically 500, we have attempted to quantifythe relative contributions of rotation and macroturbulence, but evenwith data of this quality significant problems were encountered.However, for all our targets, a model where macroturbulence dominatesand rotation is negligible is acceptable; the reverse scenario leads topoor agreement between theory and observation. Additionally, there ismarginal evidence for the degree of broadening increasing with linestrength, possibly a result of the stronger lines being formed higher inthe atmosphere. Acceptable values of the projected rotational velocityare normally less than or equal to 50 km s-1, which may alsobe a typical upper limit for the rotational velocity. Our best estimatesfor the projected rotational velocity are typically 10-20 kms-1 and hence compatible with this limit. These values arecompared with those predicted by single star evolutionary models, whichare initially rapidly rotating. It is concluded that either these modelsunderestimate the rate of rotational breaking or some of the targets maybe evolving through a blue loop or are binaries.

Rotational Velocities of B Stars
We measured the projected rotational velocities of 1092 northern B starslisted in the Bright Star Catalogue (BSC) and calibrated them againstthe 1975 Slettebak et al. system. We found that the published values ofB dwarfs in the BSC average 27% higher than those standards. Only 0.3%of the stars have rotational velocities in excess of two-thirds of thebreakup velocities, and the mean velocity is only 25% of breakup,implying that impending breakup is not a significant factor in reducingrotational velocities. For the B8-B9.5 III-V stars the bimodaldistribution in V can be explained by a set of slowly rotating Ap starsand a set of rapidly rotating normal stars. For the B0-B5 III-V starsthat include very few peculiar stars, the distributions in V are notbimodal. Are the low rotational velocities of B stars due to theoccurrence of frequent low-mass companions, planets, or disks? Therotational velocities of giants originating from late B dwarfs areconsistent with their conservation of angular momentum in shells.However, we are puzzled by why the giants that originate from the earlyB dwarfs, despite having 3 times greater radii, have nearly the samerotational velocities. We find that all B-type primaries in binarieswith periods less than 2.4 days have synchronized rotational and orbitalmotions; those with periods between 2.4 and 5.0 days are rotating withina factor 2 of synchronization or are ``nearly synchronized.'' Thecorresponding period ranges for A-type stars are 4.9 and 10.5 days, ortwice as large. We found that the rotational velocities of the primariesare synchronized earlier than their orbits are circularized. The maximumorbital period for circularized B binaries is 1.5 days and for Abinaries is 2.5 days. For stars of various ages from 107.5 to1010.2 yr the maximum circularized periods are a smoothexponential function of age.

A Critical Examination of the l-C3H-2 Spectrum and the Diffuse Interstellar Bands
It has recently been suggested by J. P. Maier's group that the originband and three vibronic bands of the linear propadienylidene anionl-C3H-2 match the diffuse interstellarbands (DIBs). We have examined the wavelength ranges in question usingdata from our ongoing DIB survey at the Apache Point Observatory. Wefind that the strongest DIB (λ6993) is not an acceptablewavelength match to the origin band ofl-C3H-2, based on high-resolutionlaboratory data. The nondetection of interstellar features correspondingto the K=2<--1 and K=0<--1 branches of paral-C3H-2 also argues against theassignment of λ6993 to the K=1<--0 branch of orthol-C3H-2. Two of the three DIBs thathave been attributed to vibronic bands do not correlate in intensitywith λ6993, providing further evidence against the assignment ofthis set of DIBs to l-C3H-2.

Observations of H3 in the Diffuse Interstellar Medium
Surprisingly large column densities of H+3 havebeen detected using infrared absorption spectroscopy in seven diffusecloud sight lines (Cygnus OB2 12, Cygnus OB2 5, HD 183143, HD 20041, WR104, WR 118, and WR 121), demonstrating that H+3is ubiquitous in the diffuse interstellar medium. Using the standardmodel of diffuse cloud chemistry, our H+3 columndensities imply unreasonably long path lengths (~1 kpc) and lowdensities (~3 cm-3). Complimentary millimeter-wave, infrared,and visible observations of related species suggest that the chemicalmodel is incorrect and that the number density ofH+3 must be increased by 1-2 orders of magnitude.Possible solutions include a reduced electron fraction, an enhanced rateof H2 ionization, and/or a smaller value of theH+3 dissociative recombination rate constant thanimplied by laboratory experiments.

An upper limit to the interstellar C5 abundance in translucent clouds
We have analyzed high resolution spectra of several slightly tomoderately reddened stars collected at two observatories: ESO (La Silla)and Terskol (Northern Caucasia), to estimate the abundance of theC5 molecule in the interstellar medium. We confirm thepresence of a feature near 4975 Å which appears to be a weak DIBrather than the predicted C5 band since the origin band near5109 Å remains invisible even in spectra of high signal-to-noiseratio ( ~ 2500) and spectral resolution (R ~ 220 000). This confirmsthat the C5 abundance in translucent interstellar clouds isvery low. We estimate its limit as low as 1011cm-2 in the scale E(B-V)=0.35 for ``zeta" type objects thatis two times lower than that of Maier et al. (2002). Based on datacollected at the ESO 3.6 m telescope operated on La Silla Observatory,Chile and 2-m telescope of the Terskol Observatory, Russia.

CHARM: A Catalog of High Angular Resolution Measurements
The Catalog of High Angular Resolution Measurements (CHARM) includesmost of the measurements obtained by the techniques of lunaroccultations and long-baseline interferometry at visual and infraredwavelengths, which have appeared in the literature or have otherwisebeen made public until mid-2001. A total of 2432 measurements of 1625sources are included, along with extensive auxiliary information. Inparticular, visual and infrared photometry is included for almost allthe sources. This has been partly extracted from currently availablecatalogs, and partly obtained specifically for CHARM. The main aim is toprovide a compilation of sources which could be used as calibrators orfor science verification purposes by the new generation of largeground-based facilities such as the ESO Very Large Interferometer andthe Keck Interferometer. The Catalog is available in electronic form atthe CDS via anonymous ftp to cdsarc.u-strasbg.fr ( or viahttp://cdsweb.u-strasbg.fr/cgi-bin/qcat?J/A+A/386/492, and from theauthors on CD-Rom.

Spectroscopic Classification of 42 Large Magellanic Cloud OB Stars: Selection of Probes for the Hot Gaseous Halo of the Large Magellanic Cloud
Interstellar C IV absorption-line studies of the hot gaseous halo of theLarge Magellanic Cloud (LMC) have been hindered by nonideal selectionsof early-type probe stars in regions where C+3 can beproduced locally via photoionization, fast stellar winds, or supernovae.To observe stars outside such regions, precise spectral classificationsof OB stars in the field are needed. Therefore, we have obtainedmedium-dispersion spectra of 42 early-type stars in the LMC that aredistributed outside superbubbles or supergiant shells. The spectralclassification of these stars is presented in this paper. Nineteen ofthese program stars have spectral types between B1 and O7 and are thussuitable probes for interstellar C IV absorption-line studies of the hotgaseous halo of the LMC.

Far-ultraviolet extinction and diffuse interstellar bands
We relate the equivalent widths of the major diffuse interstellar bands(DIBs) near 5797 and 5780Å with different colour excesses,normalized by E(B-V), which characterize the growth of interstellarextinction in different wavelength ranges. It is demonstrated that thetwo DIBs correlate best with different parts of the extinction curve,and the ratio of these diffuse bands is best correlated with thefar-ultraviolet (UV) rise. A number of peculiar lines of sight are alsofound, indicating that the carriers of some DIBs and the far-UVextinction can be separated in certain environments, e.g. towards thePer OB2 association.

On the detection of the linear C5 molecule in the interstellar medium
An upper limit of the column density of the C5 linearmolecule in translucent interstellar clouds is estimated fromhigh-resolution (R=80000) and very high signal-to-noise ratio (~1000)echelle spectra. It is 1012cm-2 per E(B-V)=1 (twoorders of magnitude lower than that of C2).

Profiles of blue and infrared diffuse interstellar bands
The paper presents a survey of profiles of reasonably strong diffuseinterstellar bands (DIBs) based on the extensive set of high-resolutionspectra acquired with the aid of echelle spectrographs installed at the2-m Terskol, 2-m Pic du Midi and 1-m SAO telescopes. The surveyeddiffuse interstellar bands cover the spectral ranges of blue andnear-infrared, i.e the DIBs not surveyed by Krełowski &Schmidt. The possible modifications caused by stellar and telluric linesare discussed. The very broad features such as 4430 are not discussedbecause the shapes of their profiles, extracted from echelle spectra,are very uncertain. The signal-to-noise (S/N) ratios of the spectra arenot high enough to enable discussion of the profiles of numerous weakinterstellar features discovered recently.

A High-Resolution Survey of Interstellar K I Absorption
We present high-resolution (FWHM ~0.4-1.8 km s-1) spectra,obtained with the AAT UHRF, the McDonald Observatory 2.7 m coudéspectrograph, and/or the KPNO coudé feed, of interstellar K Iabsorption toward 54 Galactic stars. These new K I spectra revealcomplex structure and narrow, closely blended components in many linesof sight. Multicomponent fits to the line profiles yield estimates forthe column densities, line widths, and velocities for 319 individualinterstellar cloud components. The median component width (FWHM) and thetrue median separation between adjacent components are both <~1.2 kms-1. The median and maximum individual component K I columndensities, about 4×1010 and 1012cm-2, correspond to individual component hydrogen columndensities of about 2×1020 and 1021cm-2 and E(B-V)~0.03 and 0.17, respectively. If T istypically ~100 K, then at least half the individual components havesubsonic internal turbulent velocities. We also reexamine therelationships between the column densities of K I, Na I, C I, Li I,Htot, H2, and CH. The four trace neutral speciesexhibit essentially linear relationships with each other over wideranges in overall column density. If C is uniformly depleted by 0.4 dex,then Li, Na, and K are each typically depleted by 0.6-0.7 dex. The totalline of sight values for N(K I) and N(Na I) show roughly quadraticdependences on N(Htot), but the relationships for theensemble of individual clouds could be significantly steeper. Thesequadratic (or steeper) dependences appear to rule out significantcontributions to the ionization from cosmic rays, X-rays, and/or chargeexchange with C II in most cases. Charge exchange with negativelycharged large molecules may often be more important than radiativerecombination in neutralizing most singly ionized atomic species in coolH I clouds, however-suggesting that the true ne,nH, and thermal pressures may be significantly smaller thanthe values estimated by considering only radiative recombination. BothN(CH) and N(H2) are nearly linearly proportional to N(K I)and N(Na I) [except for 1015cm-2<~N(H2)<~1019cm-2, over which H2 makes the transition to theself-shielded regime]. Those relationships appear also to hold for manyindividual components and component groups, suggesting thathigh-resolution spectra of K I and Na I can be very useful forinterpreting lower resolution molecular data. The scatter about allthese mean relationships is generally small (<~0.1-0.2 dex), ifcertain consistently ``discrepant'' sight lines are excluded-suggestingthat both the relative depletions and the relative ionization of Li, C,Na, and K are generally within factors of 2 of their mean values.Differences noted for sight lines in Sco-Oph, in the Pleiades, near theOrion Trapezium, and in the LMC and SMC may be due to differences in thestrength and/or shape of the ambient radiation fields, perhaps amplifiedby the effects of charge transfer with large molecules.

Rejection of the C-7 Diffuse Interstellar Band Hypothesis
Using the new high-resolution (~8 km s-1) echellespectrograph on the 3.5 m telescope at the Apache Point Observatory, wehave begun a high-sensitivity survey of the diffuse interstellar bands(DIBs) in a large sample of reddened stars. Now that we are 2 years intothis long-term survey, our sample includes over 20 reddened stars thatshow at least one of the DIBs that had been suggested to be caused byC-7, based on the gas-phase measurement of theC-7 spectrum by J. P. Maier's group. Thehigh-quality astronomical data from this larger sample of stars, alongwith the spectroscopic constants from the new laboratory work recentlyreported by Maier's group, have enabled us to examine more carefully theagreement between C-7 and the DIBs. We find thatnone of the C-7 bands match the DIBs in wavelengthor expected profile. One of the DIBs (λ5748) attributed toC-7 is actually a stellar line. The two strongestDIBs attributed to C-7 (λ6270 andλ4964) are not correlated in strength, so they cannot share thesame carrier. On the whole, we find no evidence supporting thehypothesis that C-7 is a carrier of the DIBs.

CCD drift-scan imaging lunar occultations: A feasible approach for sub-meter class telescopes
A CCD drift-scanning technique for lunar occultation (LO) observationsis presented. While this approach has been addressed before by Sturmann(\cite{laszlo94}) for the case of large telescopes, the technicalvalidity has never been discussed for sub-meter class telescopes. Incontrast to Sturmann's scheme, the proposed technique places the CCD inthe image plane of the telescope. This does not represent a problem inthe case of small telescopes, where the practical angular resolutionattainable by LO is not limited by aperture smoothing. Photon-generatedcharge is read out at millisecond rates on a column by column basis, asthe diffraction pattern of the occulted star is being tracked. Two LOevents (SAO 79031 and SAO 77911)were observed to demonstrate the feasibility of the method. Dataanalysis was carried out, yielding unresolved angular diameters for bothobjects. We show, however, that the technique could be useful for closebinary detections with small telescopes. A discussion of the limitingresolution and magnitude imposed by our instrumentation is carried out,showing that the drift-scanning technique could be extended to 1-2 mtelescopes for stellar diameter determination purposes. Finally, wepoint out that the technical demands required by this technique can beeasily met by most small professional observatories and advancedamateurs.

A possible sets of diffuse bands originating at the same carrier
This paper discusses measurements of eight selected diffuse interstellarbands (DIBs): lambda lambda 5793, 5809, 5819, 5828, 6196, 6397, 6614 and6660 performed in high resolution, high S/N spectra of 41 reddenedstars. Central depths, considered less error-prone than equivalentwidths, are measured and mutual correlations between the selected DIBsare analyzed. Tight correlations between the DIBs: 5809, 6196, 6614 and6660 may suggest their common origin despite their widths differing by afactor of up to 2. The performed simulations prove that this fact doesnot preclude a common, molecular carrier of such features.

Multicomponent radiatively driven stellar winds. II. Gayley-Owocki heating in multitemperature winds of OB stars
We show that the so-called Gayley-Owocki (Doppler) heating is importantfor the temperature structure of the wind of main sequence stars coolerthan the spectral type O6. The formula for Gayley-Owocki heating isderived directly from the Boltzmann equation as a direct consequence ofthe dependence of the driving force on the velocity gradient. SinceGayley-Owocki heating deposits heat directly on the absorbing ions, wealso investigated the possibility that individual components of theradiatively driven stellar wind have different temperatures. This effectis negligible in the wind of O stars, whereas a significant temperaturedifference takes place in the winds of main sequence B stars for starscooler than B2. Typical temperature differences between absorbing ionsand other flow components for such stars is of the order 103K. However, in the case when the passive component falls back onto thestar, the absorbing component reaches temperatures of order106 K, which allows for emission of X-rays. Moreover, wecompare our computed terminal velocities with the observed ones. Wefound quite good agreement between predicted and observed terminalvelocities. The systematic difference coming from the using of the socalled ``cooking formula'' has been removed.

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Observation and Astrometry data

Right ascension:06h03m55.20s
Apparent magnitude:4.63
Distance:10000 parsecs
Proper motion RA:3.5
Proper motion Dec:-4.4
B-T magnitude:4.893
V-T magnitude:4.662

Catalogs and designations:
Proper Names
Bayerχβ Ori
Flamsteed62 Ori
HD 1989HD 41117
TYCHO-2 2000TYC 1321-1515-1
USNO-A2.0USNO-A2 1050-03043684
BSC 1991HR 2135
HIPHIP 28716

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