AAS 197, January 2001
Session 42. Dust and Theory of ISM
Display, Tuesday, January 9, 2001, 9:30am-7:00pm, Exhibit Hall

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[42.08] Evolution of small grains probed with FUSE

M.J. Wolff (SSI), U.J. Sofia (Whitman), B.L. Rachford (CASA), G.C. Clayton (LSU), B.T. Draine (Princeton), K.D. Gordon (Steward), P.G. Martin (CITA), P.G. Martin (CITA), J.S. Mathis (Wisconsin), T.P. Snow (CASA), D.C.B. Whittet (RPI)

Using the Far Ultraviolet Spectroscopic Explorer (FUSE), we have obtained a data set that offers an opportunity to significantly improve our knowledge of small dust grain properties. Such an advance has not been possible prior to the advent of FUSE and its unique capabilities: the high far ultraviolet (FUV) throughput and the ability to resolve H2 lines, combined with a well-characterized instrumental calibration. We will present preliminary FUV extinction curves for several types of sightlines which possess distinct signatures associated with the small grain population and whose mid-UV extinction curves reveal vastly differing amounts of intermediate-sized particles. In addition to a variety of important Galactic sightlines (i.e., extreme values of RV, polarized 2175~Å\ feature), our sightlines include objects in the Small Magellanic Cloud where very non-Galactic mid-ultraviolet extinction properties are seen. Ultimately, these data will be used to probe and constrain the properties of the small dust grains, such as abundance and size, and their connection to the very different environments observed.

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

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