Issue Date: August 25, 2008
Predicted Acid Rain Intermediate Observed
An intermediate molecule predicted to form in the atmosphere during the reaction of a hydroxyl radical with nitric acid (HONO2) has been observed spectroscopically for the first time (Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. USA, DOI: 10.1073/pnas.0800320105). The reaction plays a key role in controlling the atmospheric concentration of nitrogen oxides, which influences the formation of acid rain. Structural details of the OH–HONO2 intermediate, which has a unique six-membered ringlike configuration formed by two different hydrogen bonds, . . .
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