Fr.: processus de refroidissement
The process of → radiative cooling in which the → temperature of an astrophysical system decreases due to the radiation of a major → emission line. For example, → molecular → emission at → millimeter wavelengths and → submillimeter wavelengths results in decreasing the temperature in molecular clouds. At temperatures less than 300 K, the main → coolant is the → carbon monoxide (CO) molecule which contains most of the carbon. Similarly, the → [C II] line is a major coolant in → photodissociation regions. See also → line cooling, → cooling time.