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K.R. Sembach, W.R. Oegerle, S.D. Friedman, J.D. Kruk, W.P. Blair (JHU), B.D. Savage (U. Wisc), J.M. Shull (U. Colorado), D.G. York (U. Chicago), E.B. Jenkins (Princeton), H.W. Moos (JHU), G. Sonneborn (NASA/GSFC), FUSE Science Team
We present early Far Ultraviolet Spectroscopic Explorer (FUSE) observations of the Seyfert 1 galaxy ESO 141-055 (l = 338.2\degr, b = --26.7\degr) covering the wavelength region 900--1188 Å. The data were obtained during the in-orbit checkout phase of the mission at a time before the instrument was fully focused. The data have a spectral resolution, \lambda/\Delta\lambda \approx 15,000 (or 20 km/sec FWHM). The FUSE spectrum of gas along this extended sight line through the Galactic halo is beautiful. It reveals a rich absorption pattern due to molecular, atomic, and highly ionized gas in the Milky Way, as well as intergalactic Lyman-beta absorption at a redshift of 0.0349. The hot gas is reavealed by O VI absorption at 1031.93 Å, which we analyze together with other high ions (C IV, N V) observed by the Hubble Space Telescope at longer wavelengths. We also compare the FUSE data directly to far-ultraviolet observations obtained previously with the ORFEUS-II spectrometer. Comparison of the two datasets shows that FUSE easily resolves many complex absorption blends seen in the lower resolution ORFEUS-II data. These observations demonstrate convincingly that FUSE is able to provide high-resolution, high sensitivity spectra for studying the chemical composition and physical properties of the interstellar and intergalactic material between the Sun and distant extragalactic objects. This work is supported by NASA contract NAS5-32985.