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Cosmic ray sputtering yield of interstellar H2O ice mantles : Ice mantle thickness dependence

Status Report From: arXiv.org e-Print archive
Posted: Thursday, September 27, 2018

E. Dartois, M. Chabot, T. Id Barkach, H. Rothard, B. Augé, A.N. Agnihotri, A. Domaracka, P. Boduch
(Submitted on 24 Sep 2018)

Interstellar grain mantles present in dense interstellar clouds are in constant exchange with the gas phase via accretion and desorption mechanisms such as UV, X-ray photodesorption, cosmic ray induced sputtering, grain thermal fluctuations, and chemical reaction energy release. The relative importance of the various desorption mechanisms is of uttermost importance for astrophysical models to constrain the chemical evolution in such high density dense cloud regions. In this experimental work we investigated the sputtering yield as a function of ice mantle thickness, exposed to Xe ions at 95MeV. The ion induced ice phase transformation and the sputtering yield were simultaneously monitored by IR spectroscopy and mass spec- trometry, respectively. The sputtering yield is constant above a characteristic ice layer thickness and starts to decrease below this thickness. An estimate of the sputtering depth corresponding to this length can be evaluated. In these experiments the measured desorption depth corresponds to 30 ice layers. Assuming an effective cylindrical shape for the volume of sputtered molecules, the aspect ratio is close to unity; in the semi-infinite ice film case this ratio is the diameter to height of the cylinder. This result shows that most ejected molecules arise from a rather compact volume. The measured infinite thickness sputtering yield for water ice mantles scales as the square of the ion electronic stopping power (Se). We expect that the desorption depth dependence varies with Se^a , where a=0.5. Astrophysical models should take into account the thickness dependence constraints of these ice mantles in the interface regions when ices are close to their extinction threshold. In the very dense cloud regions, most of the water ice mantles are above this limit for the bulk of the cosmic rays.

Comments:    6 pages, 5 figures
Subjects:    Astrophysics of Galaxies (astro-ph.GA)
Cite as:    arXiv:1809.09180 [astro-ph.GA] (or arXiv:1809.09180v1 [astro-ph.GA] for this version)
Submission history
From: Emmanuel Dartois
[v1] Mon, 24 Sep 2018 19:33:23 GMT (8366kb,D)
https://arxiv.org/abs/1809.09180
Astrobiology
Astrochemistry

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