AAS 203rd Meeting, January 2004
Session 110 Interstellar Medium I
Poster, Thursday, January 8, 2004, 9:20am-4:00pm, Grand Hall

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[110.01] Mixing Layer Theory and a Numerical Search for High Ions

S.N. Leitner (Wesleyan University), A. Esquivel, A. Lazarian, J. Cho (University of Wisconsin-Madison)

Turbulent mixing layers have important implications for gas temperatures along ISM phase interfaces. Currently, however, mixing layer theory is based on many questionable assumptions and approximations, which may limit its accuracy. Here, we developed comprehensive MHD code to simulate the dynamics and cooling of mixing layers with high precision. Our code is fully three dimensional, includes non-equilibrium cooling, is capable of tracing heavy elements, contains realistic turbulence and will be high resolution. We hope to eventually use our results to explain observations of odd spectral data, primarily, the large excess in high ion absorption (e.g. OVI, NV, CIV). According to cooling theory, high ions are expected to cool and disappear very quickly, and therefore be rare components of the ISM. Our preliminary results show that mixing layers may be efficient enough to maintain intermediate zone gas temperatures and, therefore, maintain levels of high ion abundance in agreement with observed data.

This work was supported by a NSF-REU site grant (AST-0139563) to the University of Wisconsin-Madison.

The author(s) of this abstract have provided an email address for comments about the abstract: sleitner@wesleyan.edu

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