The pure rotational spectrum of gas-phase NaNH2 (X̃1A1)

J. Xin, M. A. Brewster, L. M. Ziurys

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17 Scopus citations


The pure rotational spectrum of NaNH2 (X̃1A1) has been recorded using millimeter/submillimeter direct absorption techniques. This study is the first gas-phase detection of this molecule in the laboratory. NaNH2 was generated by the reaction of sodium vapor and NH3 in the presence of a DC discharge. The Ka = 0, 1, 2, 3, 4, and 5 components in 10 separate rotational transitions were measured, identifying the molecule as a planar, near-prolate asymmetric top with C2v, symmetry. The data were analyzed using an S-reduced Hamiltonian, and rotational constants A, B, and C were determined, as well as various centrifugal distortion parameters. An r0 structure was additionally calculated for the molecule. NaNH2 may be produced in circumstellar or interstellar gas via the radiative association reaction Na+ + NH3 → NaNH+3 + hv, followed by dissociative electron recombination. Theoretical calculations by Petrie suggest this pathway may be sufficiently fast to synthesize detectable concentrations of NaNH2.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)323-328
Number of pages6
JournalAstrophysical Journal
Issue number1 PART 1
StatePublished - Feb 10 2000


  • Circumstellar matter
  • Ism: Molecules
  • Line: identification
  • Methods: laboratory
  • Molecular data

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Astronomy and Astrophysics
  • Space and Planetary Science


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