The DCN/HCN abundance ratio in hot molecular cores

J. Hatchell, TJ Millar, S.D. Rodgers

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56 Citations (Scopus)


We have observed the 3-2 transitions of DCN and (HCN)-N-15 in a number of hot molecular cores previously surveyed by us with the interesting result that the DCN/HCN ratio is low, a few times 10(-3), in the hot cores. The abundance ratio of DCN/HCN is derived both 'on-core' and 'off-core' and, in general is larger at the 'off-core' positions. Comparision with chemical models of these sources indicates that DCN liberated from evaporated ices can be destroyed rapidly in the hot gas by reaction with atomic hydrogen, which works to reset the the initial DCN/HCN ratio in the ice to the gas-phase atomic D/H ratio. The low DCN/HCN abundance ratio we measure can be reached in less than 10(4) years, consistent with previous estimates of the core ages, if the activation energy of the reaction is less than 500 K.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)695-702
Number of pages8
JournalAstronomy and Astrophysics
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 10 Apr 1998

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Space and Planetary Science


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