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2000ApJ...545..277S - Astrophys. J., 545, 277-289 (2000/December-2)

Spatial variability in the ratio of interstellar atomic deuterium to hydrogen. II. Observations toward γ2 Velorum and ζ Puppis by the interstellar medium absorption profile spectrograph.

SONNEBORN G., TRIPP T.M., FERLET R., JENKINS E.B., SOFIA U.J., VIDAL-MADJAR A. and WOZNIAK P.R.

Abstract (from CDS):

High-resolution far-ultraviolet spectra of the early-type stars γ2 Vel and ζ Pup were obtained to measure the interstellar deuterium abundances in these directions. The observations were made with the Interstellar Medium Absorption Profile Spectrograph (IMAPS) during the ORFEUS-SPAS II mission in 1996. IMAPS spectra cover the wavelength range 930-1150 Å with λ/Δλ∼80,000. The interstellar D I features are resolved and cleanly separated from interstellar H I in the Lyδ and Lyε profiles of both sight lines and also in the Lyγ profile of ζ Pup. The D I profiles were modeled using a velocity template derived from several N I lines in the IMAPS spectra recorded at higher signal-to-noise ratio. To find the best D I column density, we minimized χ2 for model D I profiles that included not only the N(D I) as a free parameter, but also the effects of several potential sources of systematic error, which were allowed to vary as free parameters. H I column densities were measured by analyzing Lyα absorption profiles in a large number of IUE high-dispersion spectra for each of these stars and applying this same χ2-minimization technique. Ultimately we found that D/H=2.18+0.36–0.31x10–5 for γ2 Vel and 1.42+0.25–0.23x10–5 for ζ Pup, values that contrast markedly with D/H derived in Paper I for δ Ori A (the stated errors are 90% confidence limits). Evidently, the atomic D/H ratio in the ISM, averaged over path lengths of 250-500 pc, exhibits significant spatial variability. Furthermore, the observed spatial variations in D/H do not appear to be anticorrelated with N/H, one measure of heavy-element abundances. We briefly discuss some hypotheses to explain the D/H spatial variability. Within the framework of standard big bang nucleosynthesis, the large value of D/H found toward γ2 Vel is equivalent to a cosmic baryon density of ΩBh2=0.023±0.002, which we regard as an upper limit since there is no correction for the destruction of deuterium in stars.

Abstract Copyright:

Journal keyword(s): Cosmology: Observations - ISM: Abundances - ISM: Evolution - Stars: Individual: Constellation Name: γ2 Velorum - Stars: Individual: Constellation Name: ζ Puppis - Ultraviolet: ISM

Status at CDS:  

Simbad objects: 11

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