Millimeter and submillimeter wave spectra of 13C methylamine

R. A. Motiyenko, L. Margulès, V. V. Ilyushin, I. A. Smirnov, E. A. Alekseev, D. T. Halfen, L. M. Ziurys

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Scopus citations


Context. Methylamine (CH3NH2) is a light molecule of astrophysical interest, which has an intensive rotational spectrum that extends in the submillimeter wave range and far beyond, even at temperatures characteristic for the interstellar medium. It is likely for 13C isotopologue of methylamine to be identified in astronomical surveys, but there is no information available for the 13CH3NH2 millimeter and submillimeter wave spectra. Aims. In this context, to provide reliable predictions of 13CH3NH2 spectrum in millimeter and submillimeter wave ranges, we have studied rotational spectra of the 13C methylamine isotopologue in the frequency range from 48 to 945 GHz. Methods. The spectrum of 13C methylamine was recorded using conventional absorption spectrometers. The analysis of the rotational spectrum of 13Cmethylamine in the ground vibrational state was performed on the basis of the group-theoretical high-barrier tunneling Hamiltonian that was developed for methylamine. The available multiple observations of the parent methylamine species toward Sgr B2(N) at 1, 2, and 3 mm using the Submillimeter Telescope and the 12 m antenna of the Arizona Radio Observatory were used to make a search for interstellar 13CH3NH2. Results. In the recorded spectra, we have assigned 2721 rotational transitions that belong to the ground vibrational state of the 13CH3NH2. These measurements were fitted to the Hamiltonian model that uses 75 parameters to achieve an overall weighted rms deviation of 0.73. On the basis of these spectroscopic results, predictions of transition frequencies in the frequency range up to 950 GHz with J ≤ 50 and Ka ≤ 20 are presented. The search for interstellar 13C methylamine in available observational data was not successful and therefore only an upper limit of 6.5 × 1014 cm-2 can be derived for the column density of 13CH3NH2 toward Sgr B2(N), assuming the same source size, temperature, linewidth, and systemic velocity as for parent methylamine isotopic species.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article numberA152
JournalAstronomy and astrophysics
StatePublished - Mar 1 2016


  • ISM: molecules
  • Line: identification
  • Methods: laboratory: molecular
  • Molecular data
  • Submillimeter: ISM

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Astronomy and Astrophysics
  • Space and Planetary Science


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