Major progress has been made in the understanding of how H3+ recombines with thermal and sub-thermal electrons, a process of great importance to the chemistry of diffuse interstellar clouds. Two independent ion storage ring experiments with rovibrationally cold H3+ ions are in excellent agreement, and quantum mechanical calculations agree with the storage ring results quantitatively for the thermal rate constant, if not in all details concerning the cross section. The recombination mechanism is understood. A direct consequence of this progress is that the cosmic-ray ionization rate in diffuse clouds must be shifted upwards to a value larger than 10-16 s-1.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Physics and Astronomy(all)
- Physical and Theoretical Chemistry