Formation and Spectroscopy of Dicyanotriacetylene (NC8N) in Solid Kr

Thermally induced creation of dicyanotriacetylene (NC8N) was observed in solid krypton. Samples were obtained by cryogenic trapping of gaseous cyanoacetylene/Kr mixtures subjected to electric discharges. Strong a 3Σ+u X 1Σ+g phosphorescence of NC8N is reported here for the first time; its vibronic structure permitted the measurement of several ground-state vibrational frequencies. Other chemical species, mostly smaller than the precursor molecule, have also been formed, among them the dicarbon molecule (C2), and these may serve as indispensable building blocks in the NC8N synthesis. Processes leading to the elongation of cyanoacetylenic chains are of potential importance for the chemistry of icy grains present in the interstellar gas clouds.