Observations are presented of the diffuse interstellar bands at 5780 and 5797 A and of the ultraviolet lines of CH and CN in the light of six bright stars which lie behind isolated interstellar clouds. It is found that CN and CH are only present when the 5797 band is deeper than the 5780 one. Comparisons with satellite measurements of the UV extinction show that the shape of the extinction curve is linked to the same band ratio in these stars. The results support a previous suggestion that the various components of the absorption spectrum of an isolated cloud (the extinction law, atomic and molecular features and the diffuse interstellar bands) all vary together.
Monthly Notes of the Royal Astronomical Society
Mon. Not. R. Astr. Soc. 258 693 (1992)