What is it about?

In this work we present the first and complete theoretical study of the photodissociation cross section of CH3+ in the whole FUV spectral range required for astrochemical modeling, from 6 to 13.6 eV. There were no previous study on the photodissociation of CH3+, and the recommended value in astrochemical data base (KIDA) is too large as we demonstrate in this work. Also CH3+ is a radical and hence the experimental determination of its photodissociation cross section is not easy.

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Why is it important?

CH3+ has been observed for the first time in protoplanetaty disks by vibrational spectroscopy by the James Webb Space telescope. This cation is thought to play a central role in the origin of complex molecules in space, as one of the first steps in the chemistry networks. Being a very symmetric cation with no permanent electric dipole it was not possible to be detected before though microwave spectroscopy. The fact CH3+ can be observed with JWST, makes of this system a good candidate to follow the chemistry in space in the next years.

Perspectives

This work presents a cornerstone for our understanding of the chemistry of carbon cation chemistry in the interstellar medium

Octavio Roncero
Instituto de Física Fundamental, CSIC

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This page is a summary of: Quantum study of the CH3+ photodissociation in full-dimensional neural network potential energy surfaces, The Journal of Chemical Physics, May 2024, American Institute of Physics,
DOI: 10.1063/5.0206895.
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