Experimental astrochemistry : the kinetics of neutral-neutral reactions at low temperature and their relevance to the chemistry of planetary atmospheres and interstellar clouds

Abstract : The last 50 years have been characterized by the fast development of astrochemistry as a science. To date, more than 150 gas-phase neutral-neutral reactions have been investigated at low temperatures relevant to planetary atmospheres and in cold regions of the interstellar medium. However, the rate constants and nature of the products for many potentially important gas-phase processes remain unknown. We performed kinetic studies of reactive and non-reactive removal processes between electronically excited atoms [C(1D), O(1D) and N(2D)] with several molecules in order to quantify their importance in the chemistry of planetary atmospheres. Furthermore, we also investigated the reaction between carbon atoms in their ground electronic state (3P) with water, providing new evidence of a quantum mechanical tunnelling mechanism at low temperatures, which could play an important role in the chemistry of interstellar clouds. Rate constants and branching ratios for these processes were determined over the 50 - 296 K temperature range using a CRESU (Cinétique de Réaction en Ecoulement Supersonique Uniforme) apparatus coupled with pulsed laser photolysis (PLP) and vacuum ultraviolet laser induced fluorescence (VUV LIF).
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Dianailys Núñez Reyes. Experimental astrochemistry : the kinetics of neutral-neutral reactions at low temperature and their relevance to the chemistry of planetary atmospheres and interstellar clouds. Theoretical and/or physical chemistry. Université de Bordeaux, 2019. English. ⟨NNT : 2019BORD0032⟩. ⟨tel-02181159⟩

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