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Vibrational predissociation spectroscopy of mass-selected ionic clusters


Cao, Yi-Bin (1994) Vibrational predissociation spectroscopy of mass-selected ionic clusters. Dissertation (Ph.D.), California Institute of Technology. doi:10.7907/wr4a-aq20.


This thesis presents structural investigations of molecular ions and ionic clusters using vibrational predissociation spectroscopy. Experimentally, a pulsed beam of the mass-selected ion is crossed by a tunable infrared laser beam generated by a Nd:YAG pumped LiNbO_3 optical parametric oscillator. The resulting fragment ion is mass-analyzed and detected, with its intensity as a function of the laser wavelength being the "action" spectrum of the parent ion. In the case of SiH_7^+, we observed a vibrational band centered at 3866 cm^(-1) with clear P, Q, R branches, which is assigned as a perturbed H_2 stretch. The absence of a second H_2 band suggests that the ion forms a symmetric complex with a structure H_2•SiH_3^+•H_2 , in contrast to the species CH_7^+, which has the structure CH_5^+•H_2. The infrared spectra of NO_2^+(H_2O)_n clusters exhibit a marked change with cluster size, indicating that an intracluster reaction occurs with sufficient solvation. Specifically, in NO_2^+(H_2O)_n clusters where n≤3, H_2O binds to a nitronium ion core; but at n=4 the NO_2^+ reacts, transforming the cluster to a new structure of H_3O^+•(H_2O)_(n_2)•HNO_3. For protonated chlorine nitrate, we have observed two distinct isomers previously predicted by ab initio calculations: NO_2^+•(HOC1), the lowest energy isomer, and (ClO)(HO)NO^+, a covalently bonded isomer about 20 kcal/mol higher in energy. Both isomers decompose to NO_2^+ and HOCl upon photo-excitation. These results for HClONO_2^+ lend strong support to the involvement of an ionic mechanism in the reaction of ClONO_2 on polar stratospheric cloud surfaces, a critical step in the dramatic springtime depletion of ozone over Antarctica. Current research activities on halide-solvent clusters and metal-ligand complexes as well as technological improvements of the apparatus are also discussed.

Item Type:Thesis (Dissertation (Ph.D.))
Subject Keywords:Physics
Degree Grantor:California Institute of Technology
Division:Physics, Mathematics and Astronomy
Major Option:Physics
Thesis Availability:Public (worldwide access)
Research Advisor(s):
  • Okumura, Mitchio
Thesis Committee:
  • Unknown, Unknown
Defense Date:9 May 1994
Record Number:CaltechTHESIS:05012013-115447485
Persistent URL:
Default Usage Policy:No commercial reproduction, distribution, display or performance rights in this work are provided.
ID Code:7650
Deposited On:01 May 2013 20:47
Last Modified:09 Nov 2022 19:19

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