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Correlation patterns between 11 diffuse interstellar bands and ultraviolet extinction
We relate the equivalent widths of 11 diffuse interstellar bands,measured in the spectra of 49 stars, to different colour excesses in theultraviolet. We find that most of the observed bands correlatepositively with the extinction in the neighbourhood of the2175-Åbump. Correlation with colour excesses in other parts of theextinction curve is more variable from one diffuse interstellar band toanother; we find that some diffuse bands (5797, 5850 and 6376 Å)correlate positively with the overall slope of the extinction curve,while others (5780 and 6284 Å) exhibit negative correlation. Wediscuss the implications of these results on the links between thediffuse interstellar band carriers and the properties of theinterstellar grains.

Abundances and Depletions of Interstellar Oxygen
We report on the abundance of interstellar neutral oxygen (O I) for 26sight lines, using data from the Far Ultraviolet Spectroscopic Explorer,the International Spectroscopic Explorer, and the Hubble SpaceTelescope. O I column densities are derived by measuring the equivalentwidths of several ultraviolet absorption lines and subsequently fittingthose to a curve of growth. We consider both our general sample of 26sight lines and a more restrictive sample of 10 sight lines that utilizeHST data for a measurement of the weak 1355 Å line of oxygen andare thus better constrained owing to our sampling of all three sectionsof the curve of growth. The column densities of our HST sample showratios of O/H that agree with the current best solar value if dust isconsidered, with the possible exception of one sight line (HD 37903). Wenote some very limited evidence in the HST sample for trends ofincreasing depletion with respect to RV and f(H2),but the trends are not conclusive. Unlike a recent result from Cartledgeet al., we do not see evidence for increasing depletion with respect to, but our HST sample contains only two points moredense than the critical density determined in that paper. The columndensities of our more general sample show some scatter in O/H, but mostagree with the solar value to within errors. We discuss these results inthe context of establishing the best method for determining interstellarabundances, the unresolved question of the best value for O/H in theinterstellar medium, the O/H ratios observed in Galactic stars, and thedepletion of gas-phase oxygen onto dust grains.

Adaptive Optics Photometry and Astrometry of Binary Stars
We present astrometric and photometric measurements of 39 binary starsmade with the adaptive optics system on the 3.6 m AdvancedElectro-Optical System (AEOS) telescope, taken from 2002 November to2003 March. The binaries have separations ranging from 0.08" to 5.11"and differential magnitudes ranging from 0.096 to 7.9. Also, we includea list of observations of 23 known binaries that we were unable toresolve. In the process of these measurements, we discovered three newcompanions to two previously known binary stars. We also discuss theeffects of scintillation and anisoplanatism on measurements of binarystar photometry in adaptive optics images. Suggestions on how tominimize these effects are then given.Based on observations made at the Maui Space Surveillance Systemoperated by Detachment 15 of the US Air Force Research Laboratory'sDirected Energy Directorate.

CHARM2: An updated Catalog of High Angular Resolution Measurements
We present an update of the Catalog of High Angular ResolutionMeasurements (CHARM, Richichi & Percheron \cite{CHARM}, A&A,386, 492), which includes results available until July 2004. CHARM2 is acompilation of direct measurements by high angular resolution methods,as well as indirect estimates of stellar diameters. Its main goal is toprovide a reference list of sources which can be used for calibrationand verification observations with long-baseline optical and near-IRinterferometers. Single and binary stars are included, as are complexobjects from circumstellar shells to extragalactic sources. The presentupdate provides an increase of almost a factor of two over the previousedition. Additionally, it includes several corrections and improvements,as well as a cross-check with the valuable public release observationsof the ESO Very Large Telescope Interferometer (VLTI). A total of 8231entries for 3238 unique sources are now present in CHARM2. Thisrepresents an increase of a factor of 3.4 and 2.0, respectively, overthe contents of the previous version of CHARM.The catalog is only available in electronic form at the CDS viaanonymous ftp to cdsarc.u-strasbg.fr ( or via http://cdsweb.u-strasbg.fr/cgi-bin/qcat?J/A+A/431/773

Correlations between diffuse interstellar bands and atomic lines
We present and discuss correlations between strengths of the well-known,strong interstellar atomic lines of KI and CaII, and four selected,strong unidentified diffuse interstellar bands (DIBs): 5780, 5797, 5850and 6614. In order to analyse a homogeneous sample of echellehigh-resolution spectra it has been chosen to use measurements fromTerskol Observatory in Northern Caucasus plus a selected number ofhigher resolution observations performed using other instruments. Wedemonstrate that the strength of certain DIBs correlate well withneutral potassium lines and to a much lower degree with ionized calciumlines. This fact suggests that the degree of irradiation of a cloud withUV photons, capable to ionize interstellar atoms, plays a crucial rolein the formation/maintenance of certain molecular species: possiblecarriers of DIBs.

Anomalous dust-to-gas ratios in the Galaxy
Lines of sight with E(B-V)/N(HI) considerably smaller than the averagevalue for the solar neighbourhood have been selected from the catalogueof Diplas & Savage. In order to develop quantitative considerations,estimates of the molecular hydrogen column density were obtained usingthe relation of Savage et al. extended at E(B-V) > 0.4 with therecent data of Rachford et al. Contrary to the prevailing opinion in theliterature for sightlines with similar behaviour, we found that only 22per cent of our sample was characterized by both an average gas densitylarger than 1 cm-3 and a value of RV larger thanthat in the diffuse interstellar medium. By computing extinction models,we were able to fit the E(B-V)/N(HI) by changing the value ofRV only for some sightlines. For the remaining ones, aρd/ρH ratio different from the averageGalactic value must be invoked. The application of the Kramers-Kronigrelation to the observed extinction curves confirmed this possibility.Moreover, attempts to fit such curves with models having grain volumescorresponding to the standard ρd/ρH ratiofailed.We find a linear relation between ρd/ρHand E(B-V)/N(H) for our sightlines. The average Galactic value marks theseparation into two groups characterized by lower abundances of C and Sitrapped into the grains when E(B-V)/N(H) is smaller than the Galacticvalue, and by larger abundances when E(B-V)/N(H) is greater.

Large-scale wind structures in OB supergiants: a search for rotationally modulated Hα variability
We present the results of a long-term monitoring campaign of theHα line in a sample of bright OB supergiants (O7.5-B9) which aimsat detecting rotationally modulated changes potentially related to theexistence of large-scale wind structures. A total of 22 objects weremonitored during 36 nights spread over six months in 2001-2002.Coordinated broad-band photometric observations were also obtained forsome targets. Conspicuous evidence for variability in Hα is foundfor the stars displaying a feature contaminated by wind emission. Mostchanges take place on a daily time-scale, although hourly variations arealso occasionally detected. Convincing evidence for a cyclical patternof variability in Hα has been found in two stars: HD 14134 and HD42087. Periodic signals are also detected in other stars, butindependent confirmation is required. Rotational modulation is suggestedfrom the similarity between the observed recurrence time-scales (in therange 13-25 d) and estimated periods of stellar rotation. We callattention to the atypical case of HD 14134, which exhibits a clear12.8-d periodicity, both in the photometric and in the spectroscopicdata sets. This places this object among a handful of early-type starswhere one may observe a clear link between extended wind structures andphotospheric disturbances. Further modelling may test the hypothesisthat azimuthally-extended wind streams are responsible for the patternsof spectral variability in our target stars.

Toward an adequate method to isolate spectroscopic families of diffuse interstellar bands
We divide some of the observed diffuse interstellar bands (DIBs) intofamilies that appear to have the spectral structure of single species.Three different methods are applied to separate such families, exploringthe best approach for future investigations of this type. Starting witha statistical treatment of the data, we found that statistical methodsby themselves give insufficient results. Two other methods of dataanalysis (`averaging equivalent widths' and `investigating the figureswith arranged spectrograms') were found to be more useful as tools forfinding the spectroscopic families of DIBs. On the basis of thesemethods, we suggest some candidates as `relatives' of 5780- and5797-Å bands.

High-Resolution Observations of Interstellar Ca I Absorption-Implications for Depletions and Electron Densities in Diffuse Clouds
We present high-resolution (FWHM~0.3-1.5 km s-1) spectra,obtained with the AAT UHRF, the McDonald Observatory 2.7 m coudéspectrograph, and/or the KPNO coudé feed, of interstellar Ca Iabsorption toward 30 Galactic stars. Comparisons of the column densitiesof Ca I, Ca II, K I, and other species-for individual componentsidentified in the line profiles and also when integrated over entirelines of sight-yield information on relative electron densities anddepletions (dependent on assumptions regarding the ionizationequilibrium). There is no obvious relationship between the ratio N(CaI)/N(Ca II) [equal to ne/(Γ/αr) forphotoionization equilibrium] and the fraction of hydrogen in molecularform f(H2) (often taken to be indicative of the local densitynH). For a smaller sample of sight lines for which thethermal pressure (nHT) and local density can be estimated viaanalysis of the C I fine-structure excitation, the average electrondensity inferred from C, Na, and K (assuming photoionizationequilibrium) seems to be independent of nH andnHT. While the electron density (ne) obtained fromthe ratio N(Ca I)/N(Ca II) is often significantly higher than the valuesderived from other elements, the patterns of relative nederived from different elements show both similarities and differencesfor different lines of sight-suggesting that additional processesbesides photoionization and radiative recombination commonly andsignificantly affect the ionization balance of heavy elements in diffuseinterstellar clouds. Such additional processes may also contribute tothe (apparently) larger than expected fractional ionizations(ne/nH) found for some lines of sight withindependent determinations of nH. In general, inclusion of``grain-assisted'' recombination does reduce the inferred ne,but it does not reconcile the ne estimated from differentelements; it may, however, suggest some dependence of ne onnH. The depletion of calcium may have a much weakerdependence on density than was suggested by earlier comparisons with CHand CN. Two appendices present similar high-resolution spectra of Fe Ifor a few stars and give a compilation of column density data for Ca I,Ca II, Fe I, and S I.

Observations of Rotationally Resolved C3 in Translucent Sight Lines
The rotationally resolved spectrum of theA1Πu<--X1Σ+g000-000 transition of C3, centered at 4051.6 Å, hasbeen observed along 10 translucent lines of sight. To interpret thesespectra, a new method for the determination of column densities andanalysis of excitation profiles involving the simulation and fitting ofobserved spectra has been developed. The populations of lower rotationallevels (J<=14) in C3 are best fitted by thermaldistributions that are consistent with the kinetic temperaturesdetermined from the excitation profile of C2. Just as in thecase of C2, higher rotational levels (J>14) ofC3 show increased nonthermal population distributions inclouds that have been determined to have total gas densities below ~500cm-3.

Some Diffuse Interstellar Bands Related to Interstellar C2 Molecules
We have investigated the correlations between the equivalent widths of21 selected diffuse interstellar bands (DIBs) and the correspondinginterstellar column densities N(C2), N(CN), and N(CH), toward53 stars with color excesses 0.11<=E(B-V)<=1.99. The observationaldata were derived primarily from echelle spectra acquired at R=38,000 aspart of our extensive, continuing survey of the bands. All but six ofthe 53 final spectra show signal-to-noise ratios >=800 at 5780Å. The principal result presented here is that seven of the 21bands prove to be examples of ``the C2 DIBs,'' a class ofweak, narrow bands whose normalized equivalent widthsWλ(X)/Wλ (λ6196) are wellcorrelated specifically with N(C2)/E(B-V) via power laws. Incontrast, the similarly normalized equivalent widths of the 14 other,well-known DIBs analyzed here are uncorrelated, or weaklyanticorrelated, with N(C2)/E(B-V), to within theobservational uncertainties. Thus, the polyatomic molecule(s) presumedto cause these seven C2 DIBs may bear a direct chemicalrelation to C2 that is not shared by the polyatomic moleculesputatively responsible for the other 14 bands. The C2 DIBsalso show positive correlations with N(CN)/E(B-V) and N(CH)/E(B-V) inour particular sample of light paths, although generally with shallowerslopes in the case of N(CN) and with greater scatter in the case ofN(CH). Eleven additional C2 DIBs are also identified but arenot analyzed here. Among the 18 C2 DIBs identified, fourapparently have not been previously detected. The λ4963 band isgenerally the strongest of the 18 C2 DIBs, while theλ4734 band shows the most sensitive correlation withN(C2).Based on observations obtained with the Apache Point Observatory 3.5 mtelescope, which is owned and operated by the Astrophysical ResearchConsortium.

Observations of C3 in Translucent Sight Lines
The A1Πu<--X1Σ+g transition of the simplestpolyatomic carbon chain molecule, C3, at 4051.6 Å hasbeen searched for toward reddened stars where abundant C2 hadbeen reported and toward other stars with high color excess. Absorptionfrom C3 has been detected toward 15 stars with color excessE(B-V) from 0.33 to 1.12. The observed C3 column densities,ranging from 1012 to 1013 cm-2, arewell correlated with the corresponding C2 column densities,with N(C2)/N(C3)~40, indicating their closechemical relation. The carbon-rich sight line toward HD 204827 (forwhich no previous C2 observation had been reported) has byfar the highest C3 and C2 column densities. Thechemistry of formation of C3 from C2 is discussed.A search for the next strongest 020-000 vibronic band was unsuccessfulas a result of the low Franck-Condon factor and interference with astellar line. Searches for C4 and C5 werenegative.

The total-to-selective extinction ratio determined from near IR photometry of OB stars
The paper presents an extensive list of the total to selectiveextinction ratios R calculated from the infrared magnitudes of 597 O andB stars using the extrapolation method. The IR magnitudes of these starswere taken from the literature. The IR colour excesses are determinedwith the aid of "artificial standards" - Wegner (1994). The individualand mean values of total to selective extinction ratios R differ in mostcases from the average value R=3.10 +/-0.05 - Wegner (1993) in differentOB associations. The relation between total to selective extinctionratios R determined in this paper and those calculated using the "methodof variable extinction" and the Cardelli et al. (1989) formulae isdiscussed. The R values presented in this paper can be used to determineindividual absolute magnitudes of reddened OB stars with knowntrigonometric parallaxes.

Rotational Velocities of B Stars
We measured the projected rotational velocities of 1092 northern B starslisted in the Bright Star Catalogue (BSC) and calibrated them againstthe 1975 Slettebak et al. system. We found that the published values ofB dwarfs in the BSC average 27% higher than those standards. Only 0.3%of the stars have rotational velocities in excess of two-thirds of thebreakup velocities, and the mean velocity is only 25% of breakup,implying that impending breakup is not a significant factor in reducingrotational velocities. For the B8-B9.5 III-V stars the bimodaldistribution in V can be explained by a set of slowly rotating Ap starsand a set of rapidly rotating normal stars. For the B0-B5 III-V starsthat include very few peculiar stars, the distributions in V are notbimodal. Are the low rotational velocities of B stars due to theoccurrence of frequent low-mass companions, planets, or disks? Therotational velocities of giants originating from late B dwarfs areconsistent with their conservation of angular momentum in shells.However, we are puzzled by why the giants that originate from the earlyB dwarfs, despite having 3 times greater radii, have nearly the samerotational velocities. We find that all B-type primaries in binarieswith periods less than 2.4 days have synchronized rotational and orbitalmotions; those with periods between 2.4 and 5.0 days are rotating withina factor 2 of synchronization or are ``nearly synchronized.'' Thecorresponding period ranges for A-type stars are 4.9 and 10.5 days, ortwice as large. We found that the rotational velocities of the primariesare synchronized earlier than their orbits are circularized. The maximumorbital period for circularized B binaries is 1.5 days and for Abinaries is 2.5 days. For stars of various ages from 107.5 to1010.2 yr the maximum circularized periods are a smoothexponential function of age.

CHARM: A Catalog of High Angular Resolution Measurements
The Catalog of High Angular Resolution Measurements (CHARM) includesmost of the measurements obtained by the techniques of lunaroccultations and long-baseline interferometry at visual and infraredwavelengths, which have appeared in the literature or have otherwisebeen made public until mid-2001. A total of 2432 measurements of 1625sources are included, along with extensive auxiliary information. Inparticular, visual and infrared photometry is included for almost allthe sources. This has been partly extracted from currently availablecatalogs, and partly obtained specifically for CHARM. The main aim is toprovide a compilation of sources which could be used as calibrators orfor science verification purposes by the new generation of largeground-based facilities such as the ESO Very Large Interferometer andthe Keck Interferometer. The Catalog is available in electronic form atthe CDS via anonymous ftp to cdsarc.u-strasbg.fr ( or viahttp://cdsweb.u-strasbg.fr/cgi-bin/qcat?J/A+A/386/492, and from theauthors on CD-Rom.

Far-ultraviolet extinction and diffuse interstellar bands
We relate the equivalent widths of the major diffuse interstellar bands(DIBs) near 5797 and 5780Å with different colour excesses,normalized by E(B-V), which characterize the growth of interstellarextinction in different wavelength ranges. It is demonstrated that thetwo DIBs correlate best with different parts of the extinction curve,and the ratio of these diffuse bands is best correlated with thefar-ultraviolet (UV) rise. A number of peculiar lines of sight are alsofound, indicating that the carriers of some DIBs and the far-UVextinction can be separated in certain environments, e.g. towards thePer OB2 association.

Profiles of blue and infrared diffuse interstellar bands
The paper presents a survey of profiles of reasonably strong diffuseinterstellar bands (DIBs) based on the extensive set of high-resolutionspectra acquired with the aid of echelle spectrographs installed at the2-m Terskol, 2-m Pic du Midi and 1-m SAO telescopes. The surveyeddiffuse interstellar bands cover the spectral ranges of blue andnear-infrared, i.e the DIBs not surveyed by Krełowski &Schmidt. The possible modifications caused by stellar and telluric linesare discussed. The very broad features such as 4430 are not discussedbecause the shapes of their profiles, extracted from echelle spectra,are very uncertain. The signal-to-noise (S/N) ratios of the spectra arenot high enough to enable discussion of the profiles of numerous weakinterstellar features discovered recently.

New Hipparcos variables in the Bright Star Catalogue.
Not Available

Gas—Dust Shells around Some Early-Type Stars with an IR Excess (of Emission)
The results of an investigation of IR (IRAS) observations of 58O—B—A—F stars of different luminosity classes, whichare mainly members of various associations, are presented. The colorindices of these stars are determined and two-color diagrams areconstructed. The emission excesses at 12 and 25 mm (E 12 and E 25) arealso compared with the absorption A1640 of UV radiation. It is concludedthat 24 stars (of the 58 investigated) are disk systems of the Vegatype, to which Vega = N 53 also belongs. Eight known stars of the Vegatype are also given in the figures for comparison. The remaining 34stars may have gas—dust shells and/or shell—disks. The IRemission excesses of the 34 investigated stars and 11 comparison stars(eight of them are Be-Ae stars) are evidently due both to thermalemission from grains and to the emission from free—freetransitions of electrons in the gas—dust shells of these stars.

A possible sets of diffuse bands originating at the same carrier
This paper discusses measurements of eight selected diffuse interstellarbands (DIBs): lambda lambda 5793, 5809, 5819, 5828, 6196, 6397, 6614 and6660 performed in high resolution, high S/N spectra of 41 reddenedstars. Central depths, considered less error-prone than equivalentwidths, are measured and mutual correlations between the selected DIBsare analyzed. Tight correlations between the DIBs: 5809, 6196, 6614 and6660 may suggest their common origin despite their widths differing by afactor of up to 2. The performed simulations prove that this fact doesnot preclude a common, molecular carrier of such features.

B Stars as a Diagnostic of Star Formation at Low and High Redshift
We have extended the evolutionary synthesis models by Leitherer et al.by including a new library of B stars generated from the IUEhigh-dispersion spectra archive. We present the library and show how thestellar spectral properties vary according to luminosity classes andspectral types. We have generated synthetic UV spectra for prototypicalyoung stellar populations varying the IMF and the star formation law.Clear signs of age effects are seen in all models. The contribution of Bstars in the UV line spectrum is clearly detected, in particular forgreater ages when O stars have evolved. With the addition of the newlibrary we are able to investigate the fraction of stellar andinterstellar contributions and the variation in the spectral shapes ofintense lines. We have used our models to date the spectrum of the localsuper-star cluster NGC 1705-1. Photospheric lines of C III λ1247,Si III λ1417, and S V λ1502 were used as diagnostics todate the burst of NGC 1705-1 at 10 Myr. Interstellar lines are clearlyseen in the NGC 1705-1 spectrum. Broadening and blueshifts of severalresonance lines are stronger in the galaxy spectrum than in our modelsand are confirmed to be intrinsic of the galaxy. Si II λ1261 andAl II λ1671 were found to be pure interstellar lines with anaverage blueshift of 78 km s-1 owing to a directed outflow ofthe interstellar medium. We have selected the star-forming galaxy1512-cB58 as a first application of the new models to high-z galaxies.This galaxy is at z=2.723, it is gravitationally lensed, and its highsignal-to-noise ratio Keck spectrum shows features typical of localstarburst galaxies, such as NGC 1705-1. Models with continuous starformation were found to be more adequate for 1512-cB58 since there arespectral features typical of a composite stellar population of O and Bstars. A model with Z=0.4 Zsolar and an IMF with α=2.8reproduces the stellar features of the 1512-cB58 spectrum.

Two-colour photometry for 9473 components of close Hipparcos double and multiple stars
Using observations obtained with the Tycho instrument of the ESAHipparcos satellite, a two-colour photometry is produced for componentsof more than 7 000 Hipparcos double and multiple stars with angularseparations 0.1 to 2.5 arcsec. We publish 9473 components of 5173systems with separations above 0.3 arcsec. The majority of them did nothave Tycho photometry in the Hipparcos catalogue. The magnitudes arederived in the Tycho B_T and V_T passbands, similar to the Johnsonpassbands. Photometrically resolved components of the binaries withstatistically significant trigonometric parallaxes can be put on an HRdiagram, the majority of them for the first time. Based on observationsmade with the ESA Hipparcos satellite.

On bare carbon chain anions as possible carriers of the diffuse interstellar features
The recent hypothesis that some of the diffuse interstellar bandsoriginate in bare carbon chains such as C6-, C7-, C8- and C9- is testedusing echelle spectra covering the whole range of possible (i.e. foundin the laboratory) transitions of these molecules. Most of the expectedfeatures are below the level of detection in astrophysical spectra, andeven those observed show intensity ratios that are different from thosein the laboratory. Thus the hypothesis is very unlikely to be true.

The 74th Special Name-list of Variable Stars
We present the Name-list introducing GCVS names for 3153 variable starsdiscovered by the Hipparcos mission.

Radial velocities of six early type evolved stars.
Not Available

Catalogue of H-alpha emission stars in the Northern Milky Way
The ``Catalogue of Stars in the Northern Milky Way Having H-alpha inEmission" appears in Abhandlungen aus der Hamburger Sternwarte, Band XIin the year 1997. It contains 4174 stars, range {32degr <= l() II< 214degr , -10degr < b() II < +10degr } having the Hαline in emission. HBH stars and stars of further 99 lists taken from theliterature till the end of 1994 were included in the catalogue. We givethe cross-identification of stars from all lists used. The catalogue isalso available in the Centre de Données, Strasbourg ftp130.79.128.5 or http://cdsweb.u-strasbg.fr and at the HamburgObservatory via internet.

On correlations between diffuse interstellar bands
One way to better apprehend the problem of diffuse interstellar bands(DIBs) is to search for correlations between the bands in a large sampleof spectra towards various lines of sight: a strict correlation mayimply that a common carrier is at the origin of the bands, whereas anon-correlation means that different species are involved. We proposethis observational test for 10 DIBs collected in up to 62 Galactic linesof sight. Strong DIBs do not strictly correlate, and sometimes thecorrelation is very poor. Only one example of a strict correlation hasbeen found in our sample between the DIBs at 6614 and 6196 Ä, thatcould signify a single carrier for those two bands. The general absenceof strict correlations is discussed in the context of molecular carriersfor the DIBs.

The wind momentum-luminosity relationship of galactic A- and B-supergiants
The Balmer lines of four A Ia-supergiants (spectral type A0 to A3) andfourteen B Ia and Ib-supergiants (spectral type B0 to B3) in the solarneighbourhood are analyzed by means of NLTE unified model atmospheres todetermine the properties of their stellar winds, in particular theirwind momenta. As in previous work for O-stars (Puls et al. \cite{pul96})a tight relationship between stellar wind momentum and luminosity(``WLR'') is found. However, the WLR varies as function of spectraltype. Wind momenta are strongest for O-supergiants, then decrease fromearly B (B0 and B1) to mid B (B1.5 to B3) spectral types and becomestronger again for A-supergiants. The slope of the WLR appears to besteeper for A- and mid B-supergiants than for O-supergiants. Thespectral type dependence is interpreted as an effect of ionizationchanging the effective number and the line strength distributionfunction of spectral lines absorbing photon momentum around the stellarflux maximum. This interpretation needs to be confirmed by theoreticalcalculations for radiation driven winds. The ``Pistol-Star'' in theGalactic Centre, an extreme mid B-hypergiant recently identified as oneof the most luminous stars (Figer et al. \cite{fig99}) is found tocoincide with the extrapolation of the mid B-supergiant WLR towardshigher luminosities. However, the wind momentum of the Luminous BlueVariable P Cygni, a mid B-supergiant with extremely strong mass-loss, is1.2 dex higher than the WLR of the ``normal'' supergiants. Thissignificant difference is explained in terms of the well-known stellarwind bi-stability of supergiants very close to the Eddinton-limit inthis particular range of effective temperatures. A-supergiants in M31observed with HIRES at the Keck telescope have wind momenta compatiblewith their galactic counterparts. The potential of the WLR as a new,independent extragalactic distance indicator is discussed. It isconcluded that with ten to twenty objects, photometry with HST andmedium resolution spectroscopy with 8m-telescopes from the grounddistance moduli can be obtained with an accuracy of about 0fm1 out tothe Virgo and Fornax clusters of galaxies.

Galactic B-supergiants: A non-LTE model atmosphere analysis to estimate atmospheric parameters and chemical compositions
A non-LTE model atmosphere analysis of moderate resolution (R ~ 5 000)spectra of 46 Galactic B-type supergiants is presented. Standardtechniques are adopted, viz. plane-parallel geometry and radiative andhydrostatic equilibrium. Spectroscopic atmospheric parameters (T_eff,log g & v_turb) and chemical abundances (He, C, N, O, Mg & Si)are estimated, both as a test of the validity of such an approach and inan attempt to provide consistent results for supergiants covering asignificant range of spectral types. The values of the estimatedatmospheric parameters and their dependence on the physics adopted inthe model atmospheres calculations are discussed. The absolute metalabundances are compared to those of main sequence B-type stars and, ingeneral, their chemical compositions appear to be similar. Theabundances for He, C, N & O are considered in some detail and arediscussed in the context of possible evolutionary histories for thisstellar sample. Specifically, it is found that the supergiant sample canbe subdivided into a number of evolutionarily distinct groups. The lowermass objects are predominantly chemically near-normal i.e. theirphotospheres show little or no evidence for chemical processing, whereasthe higher mass supergiants have CNO ratios which are indicative of CNand possibly NO-cycle burning. An attempt is made to quantify thedifference in nitrogen and carbon abundances between the high and lowmass targets but this is hampered by theoretical uncertainties. Thepossibilities that the most highly processed supergiants may have eitherlarger rotational velocities or have undergone mass transfer within abinary system are discussed.

On the relation between diffuse interstellar bands and simple molecular species
We present observations of the major diffuse interstellar bands (DIBs)at 5780 and 5797 Ä as well as literature data and our ownobservations of the violet lines of CH and CH(+) , in the lines of sighttoward some 70 stars representing various degrees of the interstellarreddening. The correlations are shown and discussed in the context ofindicators such as far-UV extinction parameters and neutral molecularabundances. The results show that the DIBs in question (lambda lambda5797 and 5780) both probably form in diffuse cloud interiors, in arelated regime where CH and H_2 form. The ratio of the two DIBscorrelates with CH abundance, confirming that the lambda 5797 carrier isfavoured in enhanced molecular gas regions over the lambda 5780 carrier.The ratio of the two DIBs correlates poorly with CH(+) abundance. Ourcompilation of observational data also suggests that the DIB ratio maybe equally useful as a cloud type indicator as is R_V, the ratio oftotal to selective extinction, and much more readily observed. Based onobservations obtained at the Russian Special Astrophysical Observatory(SAO), Terskol Observatory (TER), Canada France Hawaii Telescope (CFHT),European Southern Observatory (ESO), Observatoire de Haute-Provence(OHP)

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Observation and Astrometry data

Right ascension:06h09m44.00s
Apparent magnitude:5.75
Distance:10000000 parsecs
Proper motion RA:0.6
Proper motion Dec:-1.7
B-T magnitude:5.973
V-T magnitude:5.797

Catalogs and designations:
Proper Names   (Edit)
Flamsteed3 Gem
HD 1989HD 42087
TYCHO-2 2000TYC 1877-1718-1
USNO-A2.0USNO-A2 1125-03493781
BSC 1991HR 2173
HIPHIP 29225

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