AAS 200th meeting, Albuquerque, NM, June 2002
Session 73. Interim Stellar Materials: Gas, Dust and Clouds
Display, Thursday, June 6, 2002, 9:20am-4:00pm, SW Exhibit Hall

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[73.02] Dust Extinction and the Structure of Lynds Dark Nebula 781

E. J. Murphy (Tufts University), T. L. Huard, C. J. Lada (Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics), J. Alves (European Southern Observatory)

We present the first analysis of Lynds Dark Nebula (LDN) 781 using near-infrared images obtained with the 1.2-meter telescope at the Fred Lawrence Whipple Observatory, supplemented with 2MASS data. By measuring the near-infrared color excesses of stars lying behind the cloud, a map of the dust extinction was constructed. From this extinction map, we identify and characterize individual cores within LDN 781. In addition, we determine the spatial density of stars foreground to this cloud in order to give a preliminary estimate of its distance. Using this distance and assuming the standard reddening law applies to the dust within this cloud, we derive the mass of LDN 781 and model the radial density profile perpendicular to its major axis.

The author(s) of this abstract have provided an email address for comments about the abstract: murphy@cosmos.phy.tufts.edu

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Bulletin of the American Astronomical Society, 34
© 2002. The American Astronomical Soceity.