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Astron. Astrophys. 354, L79-L82 (2000)

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Letter to the Editor

Detection of deuterium Balmer lines in the Orion Nebula *

G. Hébrard 1, D. Péquignot 2, A. Vidal-Madjar 1, J.R. Walsh 3 and R. Ferlet 1

1 Institut d'Astrophysique de Paris, CNRS, 98 bis Boulevard Arago, 75014 Paris, France (hebrard@iap.fr, vidalmadjar, ferlet).
2 Laboratoire d'Astrophysique Extragalactique et de Cosmologie associé au CNRS (UMR 8631) et à l'Université Paris 7, DAEC, Observatoire de Paris-Meudon, 92195 Meudon Cédex, France (daniel.pequignot@obspm.fr).
3 Space Telescope European Co-ordinating Facility, European Southern Observatory, Karl-Schwarzschild-Strasse 2, 85748 Garching bei München, Germany (jwalsh@eso.org).

Received 5 January 2000 / Accepted 7 February 2000

Abstract

The detection and first identification of the deuterium Balmer emission lines, D[FORMULA] and D[FORMULA], in the core of the Orion Nebula is reported. These lines are very narrow, have identical 11 [FORMULA] velocity shifts with respect to H[FORMULA] and H[FORMULA], are probably excited by UV continuum fluorescence from the Lyman (DI ) lines and arise from the interface between the HII region and the molecular cloud.

Key words: line: formation – line: identification – ISM: atoms, ions – ISM: H ii regions – ISM: individual objects: M42 – cosmology: observations

* Based on observations collected at the Canada-France-Hawaii Telescope, Hawaii, USA.

Send offprint requests to: Guillaume Hébrard

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© European Southern Observatory (ESO) 2000

Online publication: February 25, 2000
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