Journal Article

Modelling peculiar extinction curves

A. Zonca, C. Cecchi-Pestellini, G. Mulas and G. Malloci

in Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society

Published on behalf of The Royal Astronomical Society

Volume 410, issue 3, pages 1932-1938
Published in print January 2011 | ISSN: 0035-8711
Published online January 2011 | e-ISSN: 1365-2966 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/j.1365-2966.2010.17571.x
Modelling peculiar extinction curves

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We investigate the remarkable variety of IR-through-UV extinction curves by modelling extinction profiles with core-mantle grains and a collection of single and stacked polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons. Such a model can closely reproduce the observed curves, by simply assuming a different ratio of the molecular component to classical dust, while leaving relatively unmodified the underlying global picture. In particular, we find that for extinction curve morphologies differing significantly from the average Galactic extinction, dust grain sizes exhibit a low-end cut-off at approximately 100 nm. An additional component of very small grains of sizes around 10 nm is required to model lines of sight whose extinctions are similar to the average Galactic curve. We conclude that to be accurately described, the so-called peculiar extinction curves do not need dust grains with exotic properties.

Keywords: ISM: abundances; dust, extinction; ultraviolet: ISM

Journal Article.  4738 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Astronomy and Astrophysics

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