Many species of complex organic molecules (COMs) have been observed in several astrophysical environments but it is not clear how they are produced, particularly in cold, quiescent regions. One process that has been proposed as a means to enhance the chemical complexity of the gas phase in such regions is the explosion of the ice mantles of dust grains. In this process, a build up of chemical energy in the ice is released, sublimating the ices and producing a short lived phase of high density, high temperature gas. The gas–grain chemical code UCLCHEM has been modified to treat these explosions in order to model the observed abundances of COMs toward the TMC- 1 region. It is found that, based on our current understanding of the explosion mechanism and chemical pathways, the inclusion of explosions in chemical models is not warranted at this time. Explosions are not shown to improve the model’s match to the observed abundances of simple species in TMC-1. Further, neither the inclusion of surface diffusion chemistry, nor explosions, results in the production of COMs with observationally inferred abundances.
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