Structure and dynamics of exotic systems : Rydberg molecules, molecular anions.


UCL Promotor :  Xavier Urbain

External collaborations : Wim van der Zande (Radboud Universiteit, Nijmegen, NL), Henrik Pedersen (Aarhus University, DK), Andreas Wolf (MPI for Nuclear Physics, Heidelberg, D), Martin Cizek (Charles University, Prague, CZ)

Funding :  FRFC, IISN

A whole class of molecular systems is of transient nature (excimers, fast rotating molecules, predissociated Rydberg states) and can only be accessed by pumping energy into the system. We explore different routes to achieve this goal : atom-diatom reactive collisions, laser excitation, plasma production, Rydberg electron transfer. Among other systems, we have studied the molecular hydrogen anion, and the Rydberg states of carbon monoxide and nitrogen molecules. The transient dynamics of such systems leaves an imprint in the total kinetic energy of their fragments, and gives access to the branching ratios among different asymptotic configurations. Characteristic lifetimes are also measured, by means of time-of-flight and position sensitive measurements.

Total Kinetic energy release in the predissociation of Rydberg Nitrogen molecules:XUXU