interstellar medium


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Related to interstellar medium: Intergalactic medium

interstellar medium

n.
Material, mostly hydrogen gas, other gases, and dust, occupying the space between the stars and providing the raw material for the formation of new stars.
American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright © 2016 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.

interstellar medium

n
(Astronomy) the matter occurring between the stars of our Galaxy, largely in the spiral arms, and consisting mainly of huge clouds of ionized, neutral, or molecular hydrogen. Abbreviation: ISM
Collins English Dictionary – Complete and Unabridged, 12th Edition 2014 © HarperCollins Publishers 1991, 1994, 1998, 2000, 2003, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2011, 2014
ThesaurusAntonymsRelated WordsSynonymsLegend:
Noun1.interstellar medium - interstellar space including streams of protons moving from the stars
interstellar space - the space between stars
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References in periodicals archive ?
These absorption lines have long been used to study the interstellar medium.
So large-scale turbulence or density variations in the interstellar medium may be what shaped the tail instead.
The new map reveals the region that separates the nearest reaches of our galaxy, called the local interstellar medium, from our heliosphere - a protective bubble that shields and protects our solar system from most of the dangerous cosmic radiation traveling through space.
For the first time, astronomers have clearly detected radio waves from deuterium atoms in the interstellar medium. Deuterium--an atom of hydrogen with a neutron as well as a proton--is a chemical element that nuclear reactions produced and then nearly destroyed minutes after the Big Bang.
Papers from a June 2003 conference reflect the latest observations of the neutral interstellar medium (ISM) in nearby and distant starburst galaxies and represent current research in neutral atomic and molecular gas associated with starbursts.
The difference between the two ratios in the comet resembles that found in the interstellar medium, the source of material from which our solar system formed.
The heliosphere is a bubble in space "blown" into the interstellar medium (the hydrogen and helium gas that permeates the galaxy) by the solar wind.
Voyager 1 is now in the heliosheath, the final region of the solar system before crossing the heliopause--the boundary where the solar wind is stopped by the interstellar medium. Experts predict that the distant traveler will reach the heliopause in about a decade.
Star formation in the interstellar medium; in honor of David Hollenbach, Chirs McKee and Frank Shu; proceedings.
Heath of the University of California, Los Angeles, who notes that scientists are already inserting the new results into models of the interstellar medium.
If the distribution of the gas is relatively uniform, the stellar wind will literally blow a bubble in the interstellar medium. Thus, a delicate and beautiful shell emerges around the star, producing a new type of nebula: the interstellar bubble."
The researchers guess that the aluminum may be racing through an unusually low density pocket of the interstellar medium (SN: 4/20/96, p.