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Open Access Publications from the University of California

Classical two-slit interference effects in double photoionization of molecular hydrogen at high energies

  • Author(s): Horner, Daniel A.
  • et al.

Recent experiments on double photoionization of H$_2$ with photon energies between 160 and 240 eV have revealed body-frame angular distributions that suggest classical two-slit interference effects may be present when one electron carries most of the available energy and the second electron is not observed. We report precise quantum mechanical calculations that reproduce the experimental findings. They reveal that the interpretation in terms of classical diffraction is only appropriate at substantially higher photon energies. At the energies considered in the experiment we offer an alternative explanation based on the mixing of two non-diffractive contributions by circularly polarized light.

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