Science > Key Science > The GBT PRIMOS Project - Searching for our Molecular Origins

The GBT PRIMOS Project - Searching for our Molecular Origins

by Purav Patel last modified Apr 16, 2011 by Pat Murphy

The GBT PRIMOS Project: Searching for our Molecular Origins

Jan M. Hollis (Goddard), Anthony J. Remijan (NRAO), Philip R. Jewell (NRAO), Frank J. Lovas (NIST)

KSPAstrobiology undoubtedly begins with the formation of prebiotic molecules in interstellar clouds. The inventory of interstellar molecules presently stands at ~157 different species. Over the last several years, the GBT has been used to detect 11 new interstellar molecules - all are large (6 to 11 atoms), organic, and prebiotic in some measure. This survey will be the deepest spectral line survey to date toward the pre-eminent source of molecules in the Galaxy, the Galactic center region around Sgr B2N. The data will be provided to the astronomical community on a quarterly basis (as available) as data accumulate in order to facilitate the identification of new interstellar species and deduce likely molecular formation chemistry.