Image of the week: molecular butterflies

In today’s Image of the Week, we’ve got a butterfly the size of a molecule.  A Menssen et al  examine the distribution of photoelectrons – electrons ejected when photons ionize, in this case, molecules – in a range of molecules.  This information can tell us a lot about the way electrons are ejected in the ionization process as well as the geometry of the molecule itself.  For example, similar studies on methane can show electron ejection along bond directions.

The MFPAD for K-shell ionization of CF4 with the polarization fixed perpendicular to the C2 axis and in the plane of two C–F bonds calculated using the complex Kohn variational method. The equilibrium molecular geometry is represented by the ball and stick models and the polarization axis by the double headed arrow from A Menssen et al 2016 J. Phys. B: At. Mol. Opt. Phys. 49 055203

The researchers, from a range of German and American universities, perform experiments to determine photoelectron distributions for ethane, carbon tetrafluoride and 1,1-difluoroethylene and compared to calculated ones.  In their paper there are a whole range of differencet formations dependent on energy and which molecule they examine, but the carbon tetrafluoride image pictured above is one of the most striking.

Read more: Molecular frame photoelectron angular distributions for core ionization of ethane, carbon tetrafluoride and 1,1-difluoroethylene


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Front Image and article image: The MFPAD calculated using the complex Kohn variational method, adapted from A Menssen et al 2016 J. Phys. B: At. Mol. Opt. Phys. 49 055203



Categories: Journal of Physics B: Atomic, Molecular and Optical Physics

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