School of Physics and Astronomy

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Dr Catherine Walsh

Astrophysics Group

Contact details

Room: 9.63
Tel: +44 (0)113 3430958
Email: c.walsh1 @ leeds.ac.uk

Keywords

Astrochemistry
Molecular astrophysics
Star and planet formation
Protoplanetary disks
Comets
Exoplanetary atmospheres
Interferometry
Submillimeter astronomy

Research interests

I study molecules in space across the spectrum of molecular sources: from interstellar clouds, the birth places of stars, through to protoplanetary disks and planetary atmospheres, and even on to circumstellar envelopes around dying stars. Molecules have huge prebiotic significance since they are the elementary building blocks of planetary systems. I am interested in fundamental astrochemical processes, i.e., how molecules are formed and destroyed in different environments, and how they can be used to probe the physical conditions in the diverse range of extreme environments in which they survive. Molecules are a unique and powerful tool in astronomy.

I make use of high-spatial and high-spectral resolution observations with the Atacama Large Millimeter/Submillimeter Array which is currently revolutionising the field of star and planet formation. I am principal investigator of four ALMA programs, two of which concern the investigation of the gas and dust structure of protoplanetary disks around intermediate-mass stars that also show signatures of embedded planets and ongoing planet formation. The second two programs are a deep search for the complex organic ice reservoir in disks around nearby Sun-like stars, to help answer questions regarding the origin of complex molecules in planetary systems.

Useful links

Kinetic Database for Astrochemistry (KIDA)
The UMIST Database for Astrochemistry (UDfA)
The Extrasolar Planets Encyclopaedia
ALMA
NIST Chemical Kinetics Database
Photodissociation and photoionization of astrophysically relevant
PHotoIonization/Dissociation RATES (Huebner database)
The Cologne Database for Molecular Spectroscopy (CDMS)
JPL Molecular Spectroscopy
Splatalogue
Leiden Atomic and Molecular Database (LAMDA)
HITRAN
ExoMol
Chemspider
NIST Chemistry Web Book
NIST-JANAF Thermochemical Tables
Computational Chemistry Comparison and Benchmark DataBase

Publications

Penteado EM, Walsh C, Cuppen HM Sensitivity Analysis of Grain Surface Chemistry to Binding Energies of Ice Species Astrophysical Journal 844 -, 2017
DOI:10.3847/1538-4357/aa78f9
View abstract

Palau A, Walsh C, Sánchez-Monge Á, Girart JM, Cesaroni R, Jiménez-Serra I, Fuente A, Zapata LA, Neri R Complex Organic Molecules tracing shocks along the outflow cavity in the high-mass protostar IRAS 20126+4104 Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society 467 2723-2752, 2017
DOI:10.1093/mnras/stx004
View abstract

Fedele D, Carney M, Hogerheijde MR, Walsh C, Miotello A, Klaassen P, Bruderer S, Henning T, van Dishoeck EF ALMA unveils rings and gaps in the protoplanetary system HD 169142: signatures of two giant protoplanets Astronomy&Astrophysics 600 -, 2017
DOI:10.1051/0004-6361/201629860
View abstract

van 't Hoff MLR, Walsh C, Kama M, Facchini S, van Dishoeck EF Robustness of N₂H⁺ as tracer of the CO snowline Astronomy&Astrophysics 599 -, 2017
DOI:10.1051/0004-6361/201629452
View abstract

Furuya K, Drozdovskaya MN, Visser R, van Dishoeck EF, Walsh C, Harsono D, Hincelin U, Taquet V Water delivery from cores to disks: Deuteration as a probe of the prestellar inheritance of H₂O Astronomy&Astrophysics 599 -, 2017
DOI:10.1051/0004-6361/201629269
View abstract

Notsu S, Nomura H, Ishimoto D, Walsh C, Honda M, Hirota T, Millar TJ Candidate Water Vapor Lines to Locate the H2O Snowline Through High-dispersion Spectroscopic Observations. II. the Case of a Herbig Ae Star Astrophysical Journal 836 -, 2017
DOI:10.3847/1538-4357/836/1/118
View abstract

Millar TJ, Walsh C, Field TA Negative Ions in Space Chemical Reviews 117 1765-1795, 2017
DOI:10.1021/acs.chemrev.6b00480
View abstract

Cuppen HM, Walsh C, Lamberts T, Semenov D, Garrod RT, Penteado EM, Ioppolo S Grain Surface Models and Data for Astrochemistry Space Science Reviews 1-58, 2017
DOI:10.1007/s11214-016-0319-3
View abstract

Taquet V, Furuya K, Walsh C, Van Dishoeck EF A primordial origin for molecular oxygen in comets: a chemical kinetics study of the formation and survival of O₂ ice from clouds to discs Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society 462 S99-S115, 2016
DOI:10.1093/mnras/stw2176
View abstract

Walsh C, Juhász A, Meeus G, Dent WRF, Maud LT, Aikawa Y, Millar TJ, Nomura H ALMA reveals the anatomy of the mm-sized dust and molecular gas in the HD 97048 disk Astrophysical Journal 831 -, 2016
DOI:10.3847/0004-637X/831/2/200
View abstract

Eistrup C, Walsh C, Van Dishoeck EF Setting the volatile composition of (exo)planet-building material. Does chemical evolution in disk midplanes matter? Astronomy&Astrophysics 595 -, 2016
DOI:10.1051/0004-6361/201628509
View abstract

Drozdovskaya MN, Walsh C, Van Dishoeck EF, Furuya K, Marboeuf U, Thiabaud A, Harsono D, Visser R Cometary ices in forming protoplanetary disc midplanes Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society 462 977-993, 2016
DOI:10.1093/mnras/stw1632
View abstract

Tsukagoshi T, Nomura H, Muto T, Kawabe R, Ishimoto D, Kanagawa KD, Okuzumi S, Ida S, Walsh C, Millar TJ A Gap with a Deficit of Large Grains in the Protoplanetary Disk around TW Hya Astrophysical Journal Letters 829 -, 2016
DOI:10.3847/2041-8205/829/2/L35
View abstract

Haworth TJ, Ilee JD, Forgan DH, Facchini S, Price DJ, Boneberg DM, Booth RA, Clarke CJ, Gonzalez JF, Hutchison MA, Kamp I, Laibe G, Lyra W, Meru F, Mohanty S, Panić O, Rice K, Suzuki T, Teague R, Walsh C, Woitke P Grand Challenges in Protoplanetary Disc Modelling Publications of the Astronomical Society of Australia 33 -, 2016
DOI:10.1017/pasa.2016.45
View abstract

Notsu S, Nomura H, Ishimoto D, Walsh C, Honda M, Hirota T, Millar TJ Candidate Water Vapor Lines to Locate the H₂O Snowline through High-dispersion Spectroscopic Observations. I. The Case of a T Tauri Star The Astrophysical Journal 827 -, 2016
DOI:10.3847/0004-637X/827/2/113
View abstract

Decin L, Richards AMS, Millar TJ, Baudry A, De Beck E, Homan W, Smith N, Van de Sande M, Walsh C ALMA-resolved salt emission traces the chemical footprint and inner wind morphology of VY Canis Majoris Astronomy&Astrophysics 592 -, 2016
DOI:10.1051/0004-6361/201527934
View abstract

Walsh C, Loomis RA,Öberg KI, Kama M, Van ’t Hoff MLR, Millar TJ, Aikawa Y, Herbst E, Widicus Weaver SL, Nomura H First Detection of Gas-phase Methanol in a Protoplanetary Disk The Astrophysical Journal 823 -, 2016
DOI:10.3847/2041-8205/823/1/L10
View abstract

Li X, Millar TJ, Heays AN, Walsh C, van Dishoeck EF, Cherchneff I Chemistry and distribution of daughter species in the circumstellar envelopes of O-rich AGB stars Astronomy&Astrophysics 588 A4-A4, 2016
DOI:10.1051/0004-6361/201525739

Nomura H, Tsukagoshi T, Kawabe R, Ishimoto D, Okuzumi S, Muto T, Kanagawa KD, Ida S, Walsh C, Millar TJ, Bai X-N ALMA Observations of a Gap and a Ring in the Protoplanetary Disk around TW Hya The Astrophysical Journal 819 -, 2016
DOI:10.3847/2041-8205/819/1/L7
View abstract

Bieler A, Altwegg K, Balsiger H, Bar-Nun A, Berthelier J-J, Bochsler P, Briois C, Calmonte U, Combi M, De Keyser J, van Dishoeck EF, Fiethe B, Fuselier SA, Gasc S, Gombosi TI, Hansen KC, Hässig M, Jäckel A, Kopp E, Korth A, Le Roy L, Mall U, Maggiolo R, Marty B, Mousis O, Owen T, Rème H, Rubin M, Sémon T, Tzou C-Y, Waite JH, Walsh C, Wurz P Abundant molecular oxygen in the coma of comet 67P/Churyumov–Gerasimenko Nature 526 678-681, 2015
DOI:10.1038/nature15707

Wright CM, Maddison ST, Wilner DJ, Burton MG, Lommen D, Van Dishoeck EF, Pinilla P, Bourke TL, Menard F, Walsh C Resolving structure of the disc around HD100546 at 7 mm with ATCA Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society 453 414-438, 2015
DOI:10.1093/mnras/stv1619
View abstract

Walsh C, Nomura H, Van Dishoeck E The molecular composition of the planet-forming regions of protoplanetary disks across the luminosity regime Astronomy&Astrophysics 582 -, 2015
DOI:10.1051/0004-6361/201526751
View abstract

Drozdovskaya MN, Walsh C, Visser R, Harsono D, Van Dishoeck EF The complex chemistry of outflow cavity walls exposed: the case of low-mass protostars Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society 451 3836-3856, 2015
DOI:10.1093/mnras/stv1177
View abstract

Pinilla P, Birnstiel T, Walsh C Sequential planet formation in the HD 100546 protoplanetary disk? Astronomy&Astrophysics 580 -, 2015
DOI:10.1051/0004-6361/201425539
View abstract

Murillo NM, Bruderer S, Van Dishoeck EF, Walsh C, Harsono D, Lai S-P, Fuchs CM A low-mass protostar’s disk-envelope interface: disk-shadowing evidence from ALMA DCO⁺ observations of VLA1623 Astronomy&Astrophysics 579 -, 2015
DOI:10.1051/0004-6361/201425118
View abstract

Arasa C, Koning J, Kroes G-J, Walsh C, Van Dishoeck EF Photodesorption of H2O, HDO, and D2O ice and its impact on fractionation Astronomy&Astrophysics 575 -, 2015
DOI:10.1051/0004-6361/201322695
View abstract

Walsh C Chemical complexity in protoplanetary disks in the era of ALMA and Rosetta, 2015
DOI:10.1051/eas/1575063
View abstract

Schmalzl M, Visser R, Walsh C, Albertsson T, Van Dishoeck EF, Kristensen LE, Mottram JC Water in low-mass star-forming regions with Herschel Astronomy&Astrophysics 572 -, 2014
DOI:10.1051/0004-6361/201424236
View abstract

Drozdovskaya MN, Walsh C, Visser R, Harsono D, Van Dishoeck EF Methanol along the path from envelope to protoplanetary disc Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society 445 913-929, 2014
DOI:10.1093/mnras/stu1789
View abstract

Walsh C, Juhász A, Pinilla P, Harsono D, Mathews GS, Dent WRF, Hogerheijde MR, Birnstiel T, Meeus G, Nomura H, Aikawa Y, Millar TJ, Sandell G ALMA Hints at the Presence of two Companions in the Disk around HD 100546 Astrophysical Journal Letters 791 -, 2014
DOI:10.1088/2041-8205/791/1/L6
View abstract

Li X, Millar TJ, Walsh C, Heays AN, Van Dishoeck EF Photodissociation and chemistry of N 2 in the circumstellar envelope of carbon-rich AGB stars Astronomy&Astrophysics 568 -, 2014
DOI:10.1051/0004-6361/201424076
View abstract

Walsh C, Herbst E, Nomura H, Millar TJ, Weaver SW Complex organic molecules along the accretion flow in isolated and externally irradiated protoplanetary disks Faraday Discussions 168 389-421, 2014
DOI:10.1039/C3FD00135K
View abstract

Walsh C, Millar TJ, Nomura H, Herbst E, Weaver SW, Aikawa Y, Laas JC, Vasyunin AI Complex organic molecules in protoplanetary disks Astronomy&Astrophysics 563 -, 2014
DOI:10.1051/0004-6361/201322446
View abstract

Thrower JD, Ioppolo S, Walsh C Highlights from Faraday Discussion 168: Astrochemistry of Dust, Ice and Gas, Leiden, The Netherlands, April 2014 Chem. Commun. 50 13636-13644, 2014
DOI:10.1039/C4CC90397H

Walsh C, Millar TJ, Nomura H Molecular Line Emission from a Protoplanetary Disk Irradiated Externally by a Nearby Massive Star The Astrophysical Journal Letters 766 L23-L23, 2013
DOI:10.1088/2041-8205/766/2/L23
View abstract

McElroy D, Walsh C, Markwick AJ, Cordiner MA, Smith K, Millar TJ The UMIST database for astrochemistry 2012 Astronomy&Astrophysics 550 A36-A36, 2013
DOI:10.1051/0004-6361/201220465

Woods PM, Walsh C, Cordiner MA, Kemper F The chemistry of extragalactic carbon stars Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society 426 2689-2702, 2012
DOI:10.1111/j.1365-2966.2012.21771.x

Walsh C, Nomura H, Millar TJ, Aikawa Y Chemical Processes in Protoplanetary Disks. II. On the Importance of Photochemistry and X-Ray Ionization The Astrophysical Journal 747 114-114, 2012
DOI:10.1088/0004-637X/747/2/114
View abstract

Suutarinen A, Geppert WD, Harju J, Heikkilä A, Hotzel S, Juvela M, Millar TJ, Walsh C, Wouterloot JGA CH abundance gradient in TMC-1 Astronomy&Astrophysics 531 A121-A121, 2011
DOI:10.1051/0004-6361/201016079

Heinzeller D, Nomura H, Walsh C, Millar TJ Chemical Evolution of Protoplanetary Disks—The Effects of Viscous Accretion, Turbulent Mixing, and Disk Winds The Astrophysical Journal 731 115-115, 2011
DOI:10.1088/0004-637X/731/2/115
View abstract

Cordiner MA, Charnley SB, Buckle JV, Walsh C, Millar TJ Discovery of Interstellar Anions in Cepheus and Auriga The Astrophysical Journal Letters 730 L18-L23, 2011
DOI:10.1088/2041-8205/730/2/L18
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Walsh C, Millar TJ, Nomura H Chemical Processes in Protoplanetary Disks The Astrophysical Journal 722 1607-1623, 2010
DOI:10.1088/0004-637X/722/2/1607
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Vigren E, Hamberg M, Zhaunerchyk V, Kaminska M, Semaniak J, Larsson M, Thomas RD, af Ugglas M, Kashperka I, Millar TJ, Walsh C, Roberts H, Geppert WD Dissociative Recombination of Protonated Formic Acid: Implications for Molecular Cloud and Cometary Chemistry The Astrophysical Journal 709 1429-1435, 2010
DOI:10.1088/0004-637X/709/2/1429
View abstract

Vigren E, Hamberg M, Zhaunerchyk V, Kaminska M, Thomas RD, Trippel S, Zhang M, Kashperka I, Ugglas MA, Walsh C, Wester R, Semaniak J, Larsson M, Geppert WD Dissociative recombination of the acetaldehyde cation, CH3CHO+ Physical Chemistry Chemical Physics 12 11670-11670, 2010
DOI:10.1039/c003857a

Walsh C, Harada N, Herbst E, Millar TJ The Effects of Molecular Anions on the Chemistry of Dark Clouds The Astrophysical Journal 700 752-761, 2009
DOI:10.1088/0004-637X/700/1/752
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Vigren E, Hamberg M, Zhaunerchyk V, Kamińska M, Thomas RD, Larsson M, Millar TJ, Walsh C, Geppert WD The Dissociative Recombination of Protonated Acrylonitrile, CH2CHCNH+, with Implications for the Nitrile Chemistry in Dark Molecular Clouds and the Upper Atmosphere of Titan The Astrophysical Journal 695 317-324, 2009
DOI:10.1088/0004-637X/695/1/317
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Kamińska M, Vigren E, Zhaunerchyk V, Geppert WD, Roberts H, Walsh C, Millar TJ, Danielsson M, Hamberg M, Thomas RD, Larsson M, af Ugglas M, Semaniak J Dissociative Recombination of D3S+: Product Branching Fractions and Absolute Cross Sections The Astrophysical Journal 681 1717-1724, 2008
DOI:10.1086/588092
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Millar TJ, Walsh C, Cordiner MA, Ni Chuimin R, Herbst E Hydrocarbon Anions in Interstellar Clouds and Circumstellar Envelopes The Astrophysical Journal Letters 662 L87-L90, 2007
DOI:10.1086/519376
View abstract