Molecular absorption and emission bands dominate the visible, infrared, and submillimeter spectra of most objects with associated gas. These observations reveal a surprisingly rich array of molecular species and attest to a complex chemistry taking place in the harsh environment of the interstellar medium of galaxies. Molecules are truly everywhere and an important component of interstellar gas. This review surveys molecular observations in the various spectral windows and summarizes the chemical and physical processes involved in the formation and evolution of
The rich organic inventory of space reflects the multitude of chemical processes involved that on the one hand build up molecules an atom at a time and on the other hand break-down large molecules injected by stars to smaller fragments. Both this bottom-up and the trickle-down chemistry are reviewed. The emphasis is on understanding the characteristics of complex Polycyclic Aromatic Hydrocarbon molecules and fullerenes and their role in chemistry as well as in setting the organic inventory of regions of star and planet formation and their implications for the chemical history of the Solar system.
The Molecular Universe
Lecture time 3.30 start