Experimental and Computational Laboratory Astrochemistry – A Personal View

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The application of surface science methodologies to problems in solid state and surface laboratory astrochemistry has seen rapid growth and considerable success over the last two decades. Driven by observational astronomy and the need to explain those observations through simulations capturing the relevant physics and chemistry, early successes of surface science are to be found in the application of temperature-programmed desorption and a little bit of chemical intuition in exploring the trapping and desorption of volatiles in icy films in hot core environments; and in the various explorations of molecular hydrogen formation on model grain and ice surfaces. These illustrate the close interaction of laboratory astrochemistry and astrochemical simulation; and within laboratory chemistry of the strong links and complementarity of experimental and computational approaches. This presentation will briefly consider two topics:

(i) Wetting and de-wetting during adsorption on model grain surfaces and specifically how chemical intuition can sometimes let you down; and
(ii) Spontaneous dipole orientation during icy film growth and its astrochemical impact;

and how both experimental and computational laboratory astrochemical understanding contribute (or could contribute) to a deeper understanding of the chemical physics of these systems.
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - 13 Sept 2021
EventACO - AstroChemical Origins Congress - Department of Chemistry, University of Torino, Torino, Italy
Duration: 13 Sept 202117 Sept 2021


ConferenceACO - AstroChemical Origins Congress
Internet address


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