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Structure, Spectroscopy and Kinetics of the Methylene Amidogen (H2Cn) Radical

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The physical and chemical properties of methylene amidogen have been reviewed. In general only limited quantitative information is available about the radical and further work, both theoretical and experimental, is required. Theoretical studies have met with success but there is much to be done concerning the electron distribution in the ground state of the radical and the structure and energetics of the excited states. While the ground-state geometry seems well defined theoretically, there is still no experimental confirmation of the calculations. A high resolution IR study should provide this confirmation and may also lead to the development of more sensitive detection techniques such as IR laser absorption spectroscopy and laser magnetic resonance. Should these techniques prove feasible, then coupling of them to the discharge-flow and flash-photolysis methods will allow us to greatly increase our knowledge of the reactivity of HZ2CN. We have also reviewed several laboratory and atmospheric systems in which H2CN plays a prominent role. A better understanding of the kinetics of H2CN will lead to improved models of these complex systems and additional spectroscopic data makes more feasible the in situ detection of this important chemical intermediate.

Affiliations: 1: Astrochemistry Branch Laboratory for Extraterrestrial Physics NASA/Goddard Space Flight Center Greenbelt, Maryland 20771 USA


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