Spinning dust emission: the effect of rotation around a non-principal axis


E-mail: yacine@tapir.caltech.edu


We investigate the rotational emission from dust grains that rotate around non-principal axes. We argue that in many phases of the interstellar medium, the smallest grains, which dominate spinning dust emission, are likely to have their nutation state (orientation of principal axes relative to the angular momentum vector) randomized during each thermal spike. We recompute the excitation and damping rates associated with rotational emission from the grain permanent dipole, grain–plasma interactions, infrared photon emission and collisions. The resulting spinning dust spectra generally show a shift towards higher emissivities and peak frequencies relative to previous calculations.