AAS 201st Meeting, January, 2003
Session 47. The Interstellar Medium I
Poster, Tuesday, January 7, 2003, 9:20am-6:30pm, Exhibit Hall AB

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[47.07] Probing Circumstellar and Interstellar Material with Light Echoes

B.E.K. Sugerman, A.P.S. Crotts (Columbia University)

Light echoes are an extremely powerful tool for precision three-dimensional mapping of dust in circumstellar and interstellar environments. These echoes offer unique insights into the history of the associated stars and gas, as well as the late-time evolution of the echo source. Additionally, echoes probe the composition of the scattering dust, an important counterpart to and test of optical extinction and IR emission models. We discuss the feasibility of detecting and interpreting light echoes around a variety of variable sources. Predictions are tested against many previously-unknown light-echo structures around SN~1987A in the Large Magellanic Cloud and SN~1993J in the galaxy M81, both discovered in archival {\em HST}/WFPC2 data.

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Bulletin of the American Astronomical Society, 34, #4
© 2002. The American Astronomical Soceity.