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This book gives a comprehensive overview of the current observational and theoretical status in the field of the local and general interstellar medium. It contains contributions presented at the IAU Colloquium No. 166. Review articles and highlight talks will serve both as an introduction to the field for the undergraduate or the non-specialist and also give a summary of the most recent developments for the expert and researcher. These articles are supplemented by a representative number of original research papers. All contributions are fully refereed and have been edited with extensive care to provide a high-standard reference book. The scientific content spans a wide range from solar system measurements of dust grains to X-ray emission from distant galaxies.
Lyman Spitzer 1914 1997.- Introductory lecture: The local and general interstellar medium.- Observations of the local interstellar cloud.- The intrinsic properties of the local interstellar medium.- A thermal pressure inside the local bubble, as revealed by CI fine-structure excitation.- Ultra-high resolution Ca II observations of the LISM.- EURD: An extreme ultraviolet spectrograph to probe the hot interstellar medium.- New insights on the local ISM from EUV observations.- Spectral observations of the diffuse FUV background with DUVE (the diffuse UV experiment).- The thermal pressure of the interstellar medium derived from cloud shadows in the extreme ultraviolet.- The structure of the local hot bubble toward l = 165°, b = 0° using IUE and ROSAT data.- The interstellar and circumstellar environment of white dwarfs.- D/H-ratio: Observations with ORFEUS II.- The diffuse extreme ultraviolet background.- The soft X-ray background spectrum from DXS.- GRADES: A new instrument for spectroscopy of the local hot gas.- Planned observations of hot gas in the LISM.- Interstellar C IV and Si IV in the direction of loop I.- A new view of the LHB and 1/4 keV X-ray halo.- On the zero-level of the soft X-ray background.- ISOPHOT observations of a cold filament in the local hot bubble.- Modeling the local bubble.- Modeling the local bubble using multiple supernova remnants.- Thin layer approximation in 3-D.- Interaction of interstellar shocks with dense obstacles: Formation of bullets.- Magnetorotational mechanism: 2D simulation.- High-resolution optical observations of diffuse clouds.- The line of sight of ? canis majoris: Depletion and extent of the local cloud.- Neutral clouds within the local x-ray plasma.- The evaporation of nearby clouds and the soft X-ray background.- Diffuse ionized gas in the ? CMa tunnel.- Energetic particles in the local bubble.- Low energy cosmic rays emitted by the orion complex into the local medium.- Structure within the local bubble: Properties of individual clouds.- Kinematical structure of the local interstellar medium.- Radio, millimeter and infrared observations of the local hot bubble and its environment.- Study of the LISM using pulsar scintillation.- Interstellar scintillation of radio sources as a probe for investigations of the local interstellar medium.- Remarkable details in the local bubble's HI distribution.- Pulsars and bubble dynamics.- The magnetic field near the local bubble.- The local magnetic field in the milky way.- Imaging polarimetry of nearby molecular clouds.- Distribution and space density of soft X-ray emitting polars in the solar neighbourhood.- Small scale structure in nearby molecular gas.- Orfeus-I observations of molecular hydrogen in the galactic disk.- Physical association between the southern coalsack and chamaeleon-musca dark clouds.- The local bubble, local fluff, and heliosphere.- Measurements of the size and pressure of the local bubble towards eridanus.- Mapping cool gas in the ISM with ROSAT.- Interaction of the local bubble with its environment.- Bubbles in collision: Hydrodynamical models.- The volume filling factor of the WIM.- The influence of the local bubble on the ionization of the local interstellar cloud.- Modeling the galactic 3/4 keV X-ray background.- Tracing small-scale fluctuations in the soft X-ray background.- Intensity variations of the soft X-ray background: the boundary structure of the local hot bubble at low galactic latitudes.- Small-scale 1/4keV fluctuations due to the local hot bubble.- Fluctuations in the diffuse soft X-ray background; probably of galactic halo origin.- The radiation transfer of soft X-rays.- Equilibrium ionization and non-equilibrium ionization plasma models.- Infrared emission from interstellar dust in the local interstellar medium.- Cirrus as a probe for the galactic bubble bath.- A limit on galactic extinction not correlated with far IR emission.- Dust in hot environments: giant dusty galactic halos.- In situ measurements of interstellar dust.- Dust composition in the low density medium around spica.- 26Al in the local interstellar medium.- 26Al radioactivity in the galaxy.- Evolution of evolution of superbubbles.- Gravitational fragmentation in expanding shells.- Star formation in expanding shells: When and where.- X-ray emission from G359.1-0.5.- Origin and evolution of the cepheus bubble.- ASCA SIS X-ray observations of the wind blown bubble NGC 6888.- New measurements of the 4He abundance in galactic HII regions.- Ultraviolet absorption line studies of halo gas.- Simulations of halo supernova remnants.- Optical studies of a local filament toward the magellanic clouds and a local IVC region.- The role of magnetic reconnection in the interaction of high-velocity clouds and the Galactic disk.- High-velocity clouds and their soft X-ray emission.- The high-velocity clouds: Galactic or extragalactic?.- The galactic X-ray halo.- The galactic halo in hydrostatic equilibrium.- The galactic Hi halo.- The galactic fountain.- 3D hydrodynamical simulations of a galactic fountain.- Cloud formation in a Galactic fountain resulting from Rayleigh-Taylor instabilities.- The hot galactic corona and the soft X-ray background.- A soft X-ray halo of the LMC?.- The ORFEUS far ultraviolet spectrum of the LMC binary star HDE 269546.- The HI supergiant shells in the Large Magellanic cloud.- Diffuse ionized gas in halos of spiral galaxies.- Magnetic reconnection and extraplanar diffuse ionized gas.- Turbulent heating in the galactic diffuse ionized gas.- ROSAT observations of NGC 4258.- A ring of X-rays from the Cartwheel galaxy.- Radio and polarization properties in the disk and halo of edge-on spirals.- Superbubbles in dwarf galaxies: blown out or blown away?.- The Local Bubble and Beyond: Summary.- Workshop for continued discussion of the Local Bubble.