Dimethyl ether (DME, CH3OCH3) was observed by
Snyder et al.
in the Orion Nebula
molecular cloud in 1974.
A subsequent study from 1979 by
Clark et al.
identified additional, confirming rotational transitions beyond the single one from the initial report.
The follow-up work also also observed DME in Sgr B2, as did
Winnewisser & Gardner in 1976.
Dimethyl ether is a well-known organic molecule
with a variety of applications, including
aerosol propellant, and
It is a cousin of diethyl ether, used as an early
Update (June 2018) - DME was detected for the first time in an extragalactic source,
NGC 1068, by
Qiu et al.