Molecular Complexity In The Interstellar Medium

By Keith Cowing
Press Release
July 21, 2019
Filed under
Molecular Complexity In The Interstellar Medium
Sgr B2(N)

The search for complex organic molecules in the interstellar medium (ISM) has revealed species of ever greater complexity.

This search relies on the progress made in the laboratory to characterize their rotational spectra. Our understanding of the processes that lead to molecular complexity in the ISM builds on numerical simulations that use chemical networks fed by laboratory and theoretical studies. The advent of ALMA and NOEMA has opened a new door to explore molecular complexity in the ISM. Their high angular resolution reduces the spectral confusion of star-forming cores and their increased sensitivity allows the detection of low-abundance molecules that could not be probed before.

The complexity of the recently-detected molecules manifests itself not only in terms of number of atoms but also in their molecular structure. We discuss these developments and report on ReMoCA, a new spectral line survey performed with ALMA toward the high-mass star-forming region Sgr B2(N).

Arnaud Belloche
(Submitted on 18 Jul 2019)

Comments: to appear in the proceedings of the IAU Symposium No. 350 on Laboratory Astrophysics: from Observations to Interpretation

Subjects: Astrophysics of Galaxies (astro-ph.GA)
Cite as: arXiv:1907.07891 [astro-ph.GA] (or arXiv:1907.07891v1 [astro-ph.GA] for this version)
Submission history
From: Arnaud Belloche
[v1] Thu, 18 Jul 2019 06:32:38 UTC (20 KB)
Astrobiology, Astrochemistry

Explorers Club Fellow, ex-NASA Space Station Payload manager/space biologist, Away Teams, Journalist, Lapsed climber, Synaesthete, Na’Vi-Jedi-Freman-Buddhist-mix, ASL, Devon Island and Everest Base Camp veteran, (he/him) 🖖🏻