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W. J. Azzam (U.A.E. University)
A statistical analysis of a sample of Lyman alpha clouds containing more than 400 lines with redshifts exceeding 3 is presented. A new nonparametric approach that does not involve data binning is used to investigate the distributions of the column density and the Doppler width parameter. The distributions display a similar dependence on redshift. Furthermore, a paucity of Lyman alpha lines with Doppler parameters less than about 15 km/s is noticed suggesting a possible lower limit on cloud temperatures. The correlation between column density and Doppler parameter is also investigated. Our analysis indicates a marginal correlation between them, which is shown to be statistically insignificant.