Acetic acid in the hot cores of sagitarrius B2(N) and W51

A. Remijan, L. E. Snyder, S. Y. Liu, D. Mehringer, Yi-Jehng Kuan

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We have detected interstellar acetic acid (CH 3 COOH) toward the hot core source W51e2. This is the first new source of interstellar CH 3 COOH since its discovery by Mehringer et al. toward the hot core source Sgr B2(N-LMH). In this paper, we report CH 3 COOH observations at two new frequencies toward Sgr B2(N-LMH) with the OVRO array and at 10 frequencies toward W51e2 with the Berkeley-Illinois-Maryland Association array. Toward Sgr B2(N-LMH) the agreement in positions, intensities, and velocities between the two lines from the previous study and the two new lines strongly indicates that all four CH 3 COOH lines are coming from a common source. Using all four detected transitions, we find an average column density of 6.1(6) × 10 15 cm -2 , a fractional abundance of (0.8-6) × 10 -10 relative to H 2 and (3-6) × 10 -2 relative to its isomer methyl formate (HCOOCH 3 ). Toward W51e2, we find a CH 3 COOH column density of 1.7(5) × 10 16 cm - with a fractional abundance of 1.7 × 10 -9 relative to H 2 and (1-6) × 10 -2 relative to HCOOCH 3 . Furthermore, we find the distribution of CH 3 COOH toward W51e2 is coincident with HCOOCH 3 , thus suggesting a similar formation mechanism.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)264-273
Number of pages10
JournalAstrophysical Journal
Issue number1 I
Publication statusPublished - 2002 Sep 1



  • Astrochemistry
  • ISM: abundances
  • ISM: individual (Sagittarius B2, W51)
  • ISM: molecules

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Astronomy and Astrophysics
  • Space and Planetary Science

Cite this

Remijan, A., Snyder, L. E., Liu, S. Y., Mehringer, D., & Kuan, Y-J. (2002). Acetic acid in the hot cores of sagitarrius B2(N) and W51. Astrophysical Journal, 576(1 I), 264-273.