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G. V. Brown (U. Maryland/NASA-GSFC), NASA-GSFC Collaboration, LLNL Collaboration, Columbia U. Collaboration
Hundreds of x-ray lines with wavelengths between 10 and 20 Å\space are emitted by ions of astrophysically abundant elements. The grating instruments found on both the Chandra and XMM-Newton Observatories reflect this emission's diagnostic potential through their high-resolution and/or high-effective areas across the 10-20 Å\space bandwidth. This potential is fully realized only as a result of extensive study both experimentally and theoretically, especially of the Fe L-shell ions. During the past years, several in-depth studies of the Fe L-shell emission have been conducted using the LLNL electron beam ion traps EBIT-I and EBIT-II. These include wavelength measurements and line identifications, measurements of relative line intensities, measurement of contributions from dielectronic satellite lines, and measurements of excitation cross sections. This work has uncovered new spectral diagnostics, for example, for inferring the electron temperature, and has uncovered a variety of problems with spectral modeling packages ranging from missing lines to missing contributions to line formation. The utility of this work will carry over to the interpretation of spectra provided by future x-ray missions, such as Astro-E2, to be launched in February of 2005.
Work by the UC-LLNL was performed under auspices of DOE under contract No.\ W-7405-Eng-48 and supported by NASA grants to LLNL, GSFC, and Columbia University.
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Bulletin of the American Astronomical Society,
© 2003. The American Astronomical Soceity.