This volume describes the current state of the art in research aimed at unraveling the carriers of the enigmatic diffuse interstellar bands (DIBs). The DIBs are a set of hundreds of absorption bands that are seen from the near-ultraviolet to near-infrared wavelengths. Their interstellar origin is well established, but the precise chemical identity of the DIB carriers remains to date one of the greatest unsolved mysteries in astronomical spectroscopy. These proceedings of IAU Symposium 297 include more than 70 contributions that cover a wide range of topics in observational astronomy and astrophysics; laboratory astrophysics and spectroscopy; astrochemistry; and theoretical, experimental and computational chemistry. This interdisciplinary overview contains all the required background material to make the volume an ideal starting point for researchers and graduate students to learn about the various aspects of DIBs and related topics.
Preface; 1. Overall properties of the diffuse interstellar bands; 2. DIBs and their relation to the other interstellar components and astronomical phenomena; 3. Laboratory astrophysics studies of DIB carrier (related) candidates; 4. Theoretical modeling approaches; 5. The DIB carrier candidates; 6. Future directions in DIB research.