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Paper: Hydrides in Space: Past, Present, and Future
Volume: 417, Submillimeter Astrophysics and Technology: A Symposium Honoring Thomas G. Phillips
Page: 23
Authors: Lis, D. C.; Goldsmith, P. F.; Bergin, E. A.; Falgarone, E.; Gerin, M.; Roueff, E.
Abstract: One of the central questions of modern astrophysics concerns the life cycle of molecules in the Universe—from the diffuse interstellar medium to planetary systems—and the chemical pathways leading from simple atoms and diatomic molecules to complex organic species. In the past two decades, the Caltech Submillimeter Observatory (CSO) has contributed a number of key discoveries on these topics. Light hydrides are of particular interest for astrochemistry, as the basic building blocks of the chemical networks in both diffuse and dense clouds. Ongoing and planned submillimeter wide-field continuum surveys will yield hundreds of potential galactic targets suitable for detailed spectroscopic follow-ups. Recent advances in detector and digital spectrometer technologies promise to truly revolutionize further the field of high-resolution submillimeter spectroscopy and its application to the study of the life cycle of molecules. This will greatly improve our understanding of astrochemistry, astrobiology, the origin of life on Earth, and allow assessing the possibilities of life in other planetary systems.
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