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Open Access Publications from the University of California

Optical Control of Reactions between Water and Laser-Cooled Be+ Ions

  • Author(s): Yang, T
  • Li, A
  • Chen, GK
  • Xie, C
  • Suits, AG
  • Campbell, WC
  • Guo, H
  • Hudson, ER
  • et al.

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We investigate reactions between laser-cooled Be+ ions and room-temperature water molecules using an integrated ion trap and high-resolution time-of-flight mass spectrometer. This system allows simultaneous measurement of individual reaction rates that are resolved by reaction product. The rate coefficient of the Be+(2S1/2) + H2O → BeOH+ + H reaction is measured for the first time and is found to be approximately two times smaller than predicted by an ion-dipole capture model. Zero-point-corrected quasi-classical trajectory calculations on a highly accurate potential energy surface for the ground electronic state reveal that the reaction is capture-dominated, but a submerged barrier in the product channel lowers the reactivity. Furthermore, laser excitation of the ions from the 2S1/2 ground state to the 2P3/2 state opens new reaction channels, and we report the rate and branching ratio of the Be+(2P3/2) + H2O → BeOH+ + H and H2O+ + Be reactions. The excited-state reactions are nonadiabatic in nature.

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This item is under embargo until December 31, 2999.