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Quantum Chemistry, Dynamics, and Reaction Modeling for Molecules and Materials in Astrophysical Environments

255th National Meeting, New Orleans, LA, 18 - 22 March 2018

Final Program

Dr. David E. Woon (University of Illinois)
Dr. Herma Cuppen (Radboud University Nijmegen)


Chemical theorists contribute in many ways to the advancement of the field of astrochemistry, supporting and sometimes guiding the efforts of experimentalists and observers. Using quantum chemistry, molecular dynamics, reaction rate theory, and sophisticated reaction network modeling programs, theorists (i) predict electronic, vibrational, and rotational spectra of gas phase molecules and condensed phase model systems as well as dipole moments and other response properties, (ii) characterize reaction surfaces, determine reaction rate coefficients, and study reaction dynamics, and (iii) model the time-dependent composition and physical properties of solar and extrasolar atmospheres, interstellar clouds, and protoplanetary disks.

In the course of the four day symposium (seven half-day topical sessions), we anticipate hosting approximately 28 invited talks (30 minute talk + 5 minute discussion) and 14 contributed talks (15 minute talk + 5 minute discussion). The invited speakers will feature both senior and junior scientists from the United States and from some of the 60+ countries around the world whose scientists contribute to the field of astrochemistry. In addition to theorists, several people who are not primarily theorists will be invited to describe the type and accuracy of theoretical predictions that would help them and other people in their research area to make major advances in the next decade.

Discussion topics include:

  • Spectra and properties of gas phase molecules
  • Reaction rate coefficients and reaction dynamics in the gas phase
  • Pressure-broadening, scattering, and other non-reactive gas phase interactions
  • Reactions involving condensed phase systems
  • Spectra and non-reactive processes involving the condensed phase
  • Modeling interstellar clouds and protoplanetary disks
  • Modeling atmospheres of Solar System bodies and exoplanets