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Paper: Airborne and laboratory studies of interstellar PAHs
Volume: 73, Airborne Astronomy Symposium on the Galactic Ecosystem: From Gas to Stars to Dust
Page: 23
Authors: Allamandola, L. J.; Sandford, S. A.; Hudgins, D. M.; Witteborn, Fred C.
Abstract: A brief history of the observations which have led to the hypothesis that polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAH's) are the carriers of the widespread interstellar emission features near 3050, 1615, '1300' and 890 cm-1 (3.29, 6.2, '7.7', and 11.2 mu m) is presented. The central role of airborne spectroscopy is stressed. The principal reason for the assignment to PAH's was the resemblance of the interstellar emission spectrum to the laboratory absorption spectra of PAH's and PAH-like materials. Since precious little information was available on the properties of PAH's in the forms that are thought to exist under interstellar conditions -isolated and ionized in the emission zones, with the smallest PAH's being dehydrogenated- there was a need for a spectral data base on PAH's taken in these states. Here, the relevant infrared spectroscopic properties of PAH's will be reviewed. These laboratory spectra show that relative band intensities are severely altered and that band frequencies shift. It is shown that these new data alleviate several of the spectroscopic criticisms previously leveled at the hypothesis.
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