Optical spectroscopy of the M 15 intermediate velocity cloud

Francis Keenan, Jonathan Smoker, Carrie Trundle, N. Lehner

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5 Citations (Scopus)


We present echelle spectrograph observations in the Na D lines, at resolutions of 6.2-8.5 km s(-1), for 11 stars located in the line-of-sight to the M15 intermediate velocity cloud (IVC), which has a radial velocity of similar to +70 km s(-1) in the Local Standard of Rest. This cloud is a part of IVC Complex gp. The targets range in magnitude from m(V) = 13.3-14.8. Seven of the observed stars are in the M15 globular cluster, the remaining four being field stars. Three of the observed cluster stars are located near a peak in intensity of the IVC Hi column density as observed at a resolution of similar to 1 arcmin. Intermediate velocity gas is detected in absorption towards 7 stars, with equivalent widths in NaD2 ranging from similar to0.09-0.20 Angstrom, corresponding to log(10)(N-Na cm(-2)) similar to 11.8-12.5, and Na I/H I column density ratios (neglecting the HII component) ranging from similar to(1-3) x 10(-8). Over scales ranging from 30 arcsec to 1 arcmin, the Na i column density and the Na i/H i ratio varies by upto 70 per cent and a factor of similar to 2, respectively. Combining the current sightlines with previously obtained Nai data from Kennedy et al. (1998b), the Na i/H i column density ratio over cluster sightlines varies by upto a factor of similar to 25, when using Hi data of resolution similar to 2 x 1 arcmin. One cluster star, M15 ZNG-1, was also observed in the Ca i (lambda(air) = 4226.728 Angstrom) and Ca ii (lambda(air) = 3933.663 Angstrom) lines. A column density ratio N(Ca i)/N(Ca ii) <0.03 was found, typical of values seen in the warm ionised interstellar medium. Towards this sightline, the IVC has a Nai/Ca ii column density ratio of &SIM; 0.25, similar to that observed in the local interstellar medium. Finally, we detect tentative evidence for IV absorption in Ki (?(air) = 7698:974 &ANGS) towards 3 cluster stars, which have N(K i)/N(H i) ratios of &SIM;0.5-3 x 10(-9).
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1057-1065
Number of pages9
JournalAstronomy and Astrophysics
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2002

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Space and Planetary Science


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