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Toward the detection of pure carbon clusters in the ISM

Heath, J. R. and Van Orden, A. and Hwang, H. J. and Kuo, E. W. and Tanaka, K. and Saykally, R. J. (1995) Toward the detection of pure carbon clusters in the ISM. Advances in Space Research, 15 (3). pp. 25-33. ISSN 0273-1177. doi:10.1016/s0273-1177(99)80060-x.

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The questions of how and in what form that carbon is distributed in the Universe are critical ones for understanding the evolution of dust and planets, and for elucidating the origin of life on Earth and the prospects for discovering it elsewhere in the cosmos. While the abundant CI and CII atoms and CO molecule, which together account for a large fraction of the total carbon budget, have been thoroughly studied in many sources, and a large number of organic molecules have been detected in cold dust clouds, two potentially large reservoirs of carbon remain essentially unexplored. These are the PAH’s and pure carbon clusters. The former are strongly suspected to be important components of interstellar dust, while the latter have essentially been ignored. Most probably, this simply reflects the fact that relatively little information exists regarding the structures, properties, and in particular, on the transition frequencies of pure carbon clusters that would permit their study by astrophysical methods. The work described below is designed to mitigate these deficiencies through the study of pure carbon clusters (C_n) in the size range n=3-20 by high resolution infrared (350-3000 cm(-1)) and far infrared (10-350 cm^(-1)) laser spectroscopy. The specific goal of this work is to provide a precise inventory of laboratory frequencies and physical properties for these carbon clusters, such that a serious effort can be made to detect them in cold interstellar sources by far-IR astronomy.

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Heath, J. R.0000-0001-5356-4385
Additional Information:© 1994 Published by Elsevier. This work is currently supported by grants from the NASA Astrophysics Program (Grant #NAGW-2991) and the NASA Life Sciences Program (Grant #NAGW-2763). AVO is a NASA Graduate Fellow and EK is a NSF Graduate Fellow.
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NASA Graduate Student Research FellowshipUNSPECIFIED
NSF Graduate Research FellowshipUNSPECIFIED
Issue or Number:3
Record Number:CaltechAUTHORS:20190509-110240062
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Official Citation:J.R Heath, A Van Orden, H.J Hwang, E.W Kuo, K Tanaka, R.J Saykally, Toward the detection of pure carbon clusters in the ISM, Advances in Space Research, Volume 15, Issue 3, 1995, Pages 25-33, ISSN 0273-1177, (
Usage Policy:No commercial reproduction, distribution, display or performance rights in this work are provided.
ID Code:95372
Deposited By: George Porter
Deposited On:09 May 2019 19:23
Last Modified:16 Nov 2021 17:12

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