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Title: Herschel/HIFI line surveys: Discovery of interstellar chloronium (H{sub 2}Cl{sup +})

Prior to the launch of Herschel, HCl was the only chlorine-containing molecule detected in the interstellar medium (ISM). However, chemical models have identified chloronium, H{sub 2}Cl{sup +}, as a relatively abundant species that is potentially detectable. H{sub 2}Cl{sup +} was predicted to be most abundant in the environments where the ultraviolet radiation is strong: in diffuse clouds, or near the surfaces of dense clouds illuminated by nearby O and B stars. The HIFI instrument on Herschel provided the first detection of H{sub 2}Cl{sup +} in the ISM. The 2{sub 12}-1{sub 01} lines of ortho-H{sub 2}{sup 35}Cl{sup +} and ortho-H{sub 2}{sup 37}Cl{sup +} were detected in absorption toward NGC 6334I, and the 1{sub 11}-0{sub 00} transition of para-H{sub 2}{sup 35}Cl{sup +} was detected in absorption toward NGC 6334I and Sgr B2(S). The derived HCl/H{sub 2}Cl{sup +} column density ratios, ∼1-10, are within the range predicted by models of diffuse and dense Photon Dominated Regions (PDRs). However, the observed H{sub 2}Cl{sup +} column densities, in excess of 10{sup 13} cm{sup −2}, are significantly higher than the model predictions. These observations demonstrate the outstanding spectroscopic capabilities of HIFI for detecting new interstellar molecules and providing key constraints for astrochemical models.
Authors:
 [1]
  1. California Institute of Technology, Cahill Center for Astronomy and Astrophysics MC 301-17, Pasadena, CA 91125 (United States)
Publication Date:
OSTI Identifier:
22390908
Resource Type:
Journal Article
Resource Relation:
Journal Name: AIP Conference Proceedings; Journal Volume: 1642; Journal Issue: 1; Conference: ICCMSE-2010: International Conference of Computational Methods in Sciences and Engineering 2010, Kos (Greece), 3-8 Oct 2010; Other Information: (c) 2015 AIP Publishing LLC; Country of input: International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA)
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
74 ATOMIC AND MOLECULAR PHYSICS; ABSORPTION; CHLORINE; DENSITY; HYDROCHLORIC ACID; HYDROGEN; INTERSTELLAR SPACE; LIMITING VALUES; MOLECULAR IONS; MOLECULES; PHOTONS; POTENTIALS; STAR CLUSTERS; SURFACES; ULTRAVIOLET RADIATION