Evidence for hybrid classical-quantal behaviour in state and angle-resolved atom-diatom scattering

McCaffery, Anthony J and Wilson, Ruth J (1997) Evidence for hybrid classical-quantal behaviour in state and angle-resolved atom-diatom scattering. Journal of Physics B: Atomic, Molecular and Optical Physics, 30. 5773 - 5789. ISSN 0953-4075

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Abstract

We present measurements of the state-to-state differential scattering cross section
(DCS) for X 16Cg Na2 with Xe using a new sub-Doppler spectroscopic method and compare
results with those obtained using molecular beam techniques on the same system; the agreement
is good. Criteria for comparison are based on the recent finding (McCaffery A J and Wilson R J
1996 Phys. Rev. Lett. 77 48) that simple quasiclassical vector relations determine the direction of
the initial relative velocity vector and the scattering angle. The incident velocity direction is such
that the perpendicular component just opens the inelastic channel and the parallel component
is scattered. The relationship is Newtonian but is modified by the molecule’s characteristic
quantum structure. Angular distributions from a range of experiments are found to obey the
vector relation, suggesting that atom–molecule collisions are controlled by a quantum-modified
Newtonian mechanics, the modification arising as a consequence of the internal energy level
structure of the molecule. We introduce the term quantum-constrained kinematics to describe
the hybrid mechanics and suggest that this may also influence other collisional events.

Item Type: Article
Schools and Departments: School of Life Sciences > Chemistry
Depositing User: Anthony McCaffery
Date Deposited: 06 Feb 2012 19:37
Last Modified: 06 Jun 2013 13:14
URI: http://sro.sussex.ac.uk/id/eprint/21527
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