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Electron energy-loss spectroscopy study of polyatomic molecular systems under pyrolytic conditions


Xavier, Isaac de Melo, Jr. (1989) Electron energy-loss spectroscopy study of polyatomic molecular systems under pyrolytic conditions. Dissertation (Ph.D.), California Institute of Technology. doi:10.7907/4wx9-6j66.


The technique of variable-angle, electron energy-loss spectroscopy has been used to study the electronic spectroscopy of the diketene molecule. The experiment was performed using incident electron beam energies of 25 eV and 50 eV, and at scattering angles between 10° and 90°. The energy-loss region from 2 eV to 11 eV was examined. One spin-forbidden transition has been observed at 4.36 eV and three others that are spin-allowed have been located at 5.89 eV, 6.88 eV and 7.84 eV. Based on the intensity variation of these transitions with impact energy and scattering angle, and through analogy with simpler molecules, the first three transitions are tentatively assigned to an n → π* transition, a π - σ* (3s) Rydberg transition and a π → π* transition.

Thermal decomposition of chlorodifluoromethane, chloroform, dichloromethane and chloromethane under flash-vacuum pyrolysis conditions (900-1100°C) was investigated by the technique of electron energy-loss spectroscopy, using the impact energy of 50 eV and a scattering angle of 10°. The pyrolytic reaction follows a hydrogen-chloride α-elimination pathway. The difluoromethylene radical was produced from chlorodifluoromethane pyrolysis at 900°C and identified by its X^1 A_1 → A^1B_1 band at 5.04 eV.

Finally, a number of exploratory studies have been performed. The thermal decomposition of diketene was studied under flash vacuum pressures (1-10 mTorr) and temperatures ranging from 500°C to 1000°C. The complete decomposition of the diketene molecule into two ketene molecules was achieved at 900°C. The pyrolysis of trifluoromethyl iodide molecule at 1000°C produced an electron energy-loss spectrum with several iodine-atom, sharp peaks and only a small shoulder at 8.37 eV as a possible trifluoromethyl radical feature. The electron energy-loss spectrum of trichlorobromomethane at 900°C mainly showed features from bromine atom, chlorine molecule and tetrachloroethylene. Hexachloroacetone decomposed partially at 900°C, but showed well-defined features from chlorine, carbon monoxide and tetrachloroethylene molecules. Bromodichloromethane molecule was investigated at 1000°C and produced a congested, electron energy-loss spectrum with bromine-atom, hydrogen-bromide, hydrogen-chloride and tetrachloroethylene features.

Item Type:Thesis (Dissertation (Ph.D.))
Subject Keywords:Chemistry
Degree Grantor:California Institute of Technology
Division:Chemistry and Chemical Engineering
Major Option:Chemistry
Thesis Availability:Public (worldwide access)
Research Advisor(s):
  • Kuppermann, Aron (advisor)
  • Zewail, Ahmed H. (advisor)
Thesis Committee:
  • Unknown, Unknown
Defense Date:20 September 1988
Record Number:CaltechTHESIS:10232013-093350784
Persistent URL:
Default Usage Policy:No commercial reproduction, distribution, display or performance rights in this work are provided.
ID Code:8005
Deposited By: John Wade
Deposited On:23 Oct 2013 17:34
Last Modified:16 Apr 2021 22:26

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