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The molecular universe: an interdisciplinary programme on the physics and chemistry of molecules in space

The molecular universe: an interdisciplinary programme on the physics and chemistry of molecules in space

Objective

Molecules are an important component of the universe which dominate the cooling and degree of ionization of interstellar gas clouds and, hence, regulate star and planet formation. The exploration of paths towards chemical complexity in space has direct bea ring on the origin and evolution of life. Moreover, molecular transitions provide a sensitive probe of the dynamics and the physical and chemical conditions in a wide range of objects at scales ranging from newly formed planetary systems to galactic and ex tragalactic sizes. Near-future large scale observatories by the European Space Agency and the European Southern Observatory - in partnership with American and Far-East organizations - will open up the universe to high spatial and spectral resolution studie s of molecules and, hence, the study of the key astrophysical and astrochemical processes involved in the formation and evolution of planets, stars, and galaxies. These new missions will lead to a multitude of molecular line data in a variety of astrophysi cal environments. Identification, analysis, and interpretation of this data in terms of the physical and chemical characteristics of the astronomical sources and the origin and evolution of the molecular universe will require a concerted effort by physicis ts, chemists, and astronomers in the areas of molecular spectroscopy, collisional excitation processes, chemical reactions, and astronomical modelling on species of astrophysical relevance. The results of this expert effort need to be made easly accessible to the scientific community through web-based data archives. The Research and Training Network on the Molecular Universe provides a cohesive framework for the training and development of researchers in the early stages of their career, combining European researchers in the areas of laboratory spectroscopy, laboratory astrochemistry, molecular quantum mechanical studies, astronomical modellers, and experts on data bases and web interfaces.

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Coordinator

RIJKSUNIVERSITEIT GRONINGEN

Address

Broerstraat 5
Groningen

Netherlands

Administrative Contact

Alexander TIELENS (Prof.)

Participants (20)

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CENTRE NATIONAL DE LA RECHERCHE SCIENTIFIQUE

France

CONSEJO SUPERIOR DE INVESTIGACIONES CIENTIFICAS

Spain

GEORG-AUGUST-UNIVERSITäT GöTTINGEN

Germany

GöTEBORG UNIVERSITY

Sweden

OBSERVATOIRE DE PARIS-MEUDON

France

STICHTING KATHOLIEKE UNIVERSITEIT

Netherlands

THE CHANCELLOR, MASTERS AND SCHOLARS OF THE UNIVERSITY OF OXFORD

United Kingdom

UNIVERSITEIT LEIDEN

Netherlands

UNIVERSITY OF BASEL

Switzerland

UNIVERSITY OF DURHAM

United Kingdom

UNIVERSITY OF MANCHESTER INSTITUTE OF SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY

United Kingdom

UNIVERSITà DEGLI STUDI DI PERUGIA

Italy

UNIVERSITé BORDEAUX I

France

UNIVERSITé DE RENNES 1

France

UNIVERSITé DES SCIENCES ET TECHNOLOGIES DE LILLE

France

UNIVERSITé JOSEPH FOURIER - GRENOBLE 1

France

UNIVERSITé PARIS XI PARIS-SUD

France

UNIVERSITé PAUL SABATIER - TOULOUSE III

France

UNIVERSITÿT ZU KÿLN

Germany

WARSAW UNIVERSITY

Poland

Project information

Grant agreement ID: 512302

  • Start date

    1 October 2004

  • End date

    30 September 2008

Funded under:

FP6-MOBILITY

Coordinated by:

RIJKSUNIVERSITEIT GRONINGEN

Netherlands