Role of Interstellar Molecules on Evolution of Cosmic Deuteration: An ALMA Observation as a Case in Point

  • Dipen Sahu
Conference paper
Part of the Astrophysics and Space Science Proceedings book series (ASSSP, volume 53)


The primordial atomic D/H ratio in the interstellar medium is ∼ 10−5. There is no known source in the Universe which produces atomic deuterium. Hence, the order of cosmic deuteration is similar to the primordial D/H ratio. Despite such low D/H ratio, many deuterated molecules are seen to be heavily fractionated compared to its hydrogenated counterpart. Interstellar chemistry and zero-point energy difference in deuterated species are the main cause of it. In this article, we discuss the deuterium fractionation of interstellar molecules under different molecular cloud condition, ranging from cold prestellar condition to hot protostar condition. We also discuss, how deuterium fractionation in interstellar molecules could be used as an evolutionary tracer of molecular clouds. As an example of an interstellar deuterated molecule, we discuss here an ALMA observation of deuterated formaldehyde in the low-mass protostar system HH212.



I want to thank my supervisors Dr. Ankan Das and Prof. Sandip K. Chakrabarti for introducing me into the subject- Astrochemistry. I appreciate the effort of the Editors, for giving me a chance to write in this Festschrift.


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© Springer International Publishing AG, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Dipen Sahu
    • 1
  1. 1.Physical Research LaboratoryAhmedabadIndia

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