Charles R. Markus, James N. Hodges, Adam J. Perry, G. Stephen Kocheril, Holger S.P. Müller, Benjamin J. McCall

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The molecular ion OH+ has long been known to be an important component of the interstellar medium. Its relative abundance can be used to indirectly measure cosmic ray ionization rates of hydrogen, and it is the first intermediate in the interstellar formation of water. To date, only a limited number of pure rotational transitions have been observed in the laboratory making it necessary to indirectly calculate rotational levels from high-precision rovibrational spectroscopy. We have remeasured 30 transitions in the fundamental band with MHz-level precision, in order to enable the prediction of a THz spectrum of OH+. The ions were produced in a water cooled discharge of O2, H2, and He, and the rovibrational transitions were measured with the technique Noise Immune Cavity Enhanced Optical Heterodyne Velocity Modulation Spectroscopy. These values have been included in a global fit of field free data to a 3Σ- linear molecule effective Hamiltonian to determine improved spectroscopic parameters which were used to predict the pure rotational transition frequencies.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number138
JournalAstrophysical Journal
Issue number2
StatePublished - Feb 1 2016

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Astronomy and Astrophysics
  • Space and Planetary Science

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