Cold Chemistry: Scattering Experiments Involving Slow, Guided and Trapped Atoms and Molecules

Speaker: 
Prof. Frank Stienkemeier
Event Date and Time: 
Tue, 2012-09-18 16:30 - 17:30
Location: 
Chem D-215
Local Contact: 
Takamasa Momose
Intended Audience: 
Graduate

Cold reactive collisions of atoms and molecules have recently gained quite some attention to understand the quantum dynamics and e.g. the role of tunneling and scattering resonances. The reaction Li + HF → LiF + H represents an ideal prototype system for developing methods to calculate reliable ab-initio potential energy surfaces and to calculate quantum scattering phenomena. We have measured the dependence of the relative integral cross section in an energy range down to 25meV and observe a monotonous rise of the cross section with decreasing energy over the entire energy range which is at variance with all threshold energies deduced from ab-initio potentials and zero-point vibrational energies. In order to investigate reactive and non-reactive collisions between atoms and molecules at even much lower scattering energies, a magneto-optical trap (MOT) for ultracold Li atoms is combined with a rotating nozzle setup for producing slow beams of cold molecules.  The experimental setup  is introduced in view of  performance and limitations and first measurements of differential and integrated cross sections are presented.

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