Ketene formation in interstellar ICES: A laboratory study

Reggie L. Hudson, Mark J. Loeffler

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

40 Scopus citations


The formation of ketene (H2CCO, ethenone) in polar and apolar ices was studied with in situ 0.8 MeV proton irradiation, far-UV photolysis, and infrared spectroscopic analyses at 10-20 K. Using isotopically enriched reagents, unequivocal evidence was obtained for ketene synthesis in H 2O-rich and CO2-rich ices, and several reaction products were identified. Results from scavenging experiments suggested that ketene was formed by free-radical pathways, as opposed to acid-base processes or redox reactions. Finally, we use our results to draw conclusions about the formation and stability of ketene in the interstellar medium.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number109
JournalAstrophysical Journal
Issue number2
StatePublished - Aug 20 2013
Externally publishedYes


  • ISM: molecules
  • astrobiology
  • astrochemistry
  • molecular data
  • molecular processes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Astronomy and Astrophysics
  • Space and Planetary Science


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