The molecular universe

Fraser, H J and McCoustra, M R S and Williams, D A (2002) The molecular universe. Astronomy and Geophysics, 43 (2). pp. 10-18. ISSN 1366-8781

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Abstract

Molecules play a fundamental role in many regions of our universe. The science where chemistry and astronomy overlap is known as astrochemistry, a branch of astronomy that has risen in importance over recent years. In this article we review the significance of chemistry in several astronomical environments including the early universe, interstellar clouds, star-forming regions and protoplanetary disks. We discuss theoretical models, laboratory experiments and observational data, and present several recent and exciting results that challenge our perception of the molecular universe".