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      Searching for Propionamide (C2H5CONH2) Toward Sagittarius B2 at Centimeter Wavelengths


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          The formation of molecules in the interstellar medium (ISM) remains a complex and unresolved question in astrochemistry. A group of molecules of particular interest involves the linkage between a -carboxyl and -amine group, similar to that of a peptide bond. The detection of molecules containing these peptide-like bonds in the ISM can help elucidate possible formation mechanisms, as well as indicate the level of molecular complexity available within certain regions of the ISM. Two of the simplest molecules containing a peptide-like bond, formamide (NH2CHO) and acetamide (CH3CONH2), have previously been detected toward the star forming region Sagittarius B2 (Sgr B2). Recently, the interstellar detection of propionamide (C2H5CONH2) was reported toward Sgr B2(N) with ALMA observations at millimeter wavelengths. Yet, this detection has been questioned by others from the same set of ALMA observations as no statistically significant line emission was identified from any uncontaminated transitions. Using the PRrbiotic Interstellar MOlecule Survey (PRIMOS) observations, we report an additional search for C2H5CONH2 at centimeter wavelengths conducted with the Green Bank Telescope. No spectral signatures of C2H5CONH2 were detected. An upper limit for C2H5CONH2 at centimeter wavelengths was determined to be less than 1.8e14 cm-2 and an upper limit to the C2H5CONH2/CH3CONH2 ratio is found to be less than 2.34. This work again questions the initial detection of C2H5CONH2 and indicates that more complex peptide-like structures may have difficulty forming in the ISM or are below the detection limits of current astronomical facilities. Additional structurally related species are provided to aid in future laboratory and astronomical searches.

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          11 August 2022


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          21 Pages, 5 Figures, 5 Tables
          astro-ph.GA astro-ph.IM

          Galaxy astrophysics,Instrumentation & Methods for astrophysics
          Galaxy astrophysics, Instrumentation & Methods for astrophysics


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