Ultrafast photofragmentation dynamics of molecular iodine driven with timed XUV and near-infrared light pulses.
ULTRASHORT laser pulses
POTENTIAL energy surfaces
Journal of Chemical Physics; 1/14/2011, Vol. 134 Issue 2, p024313, 7p, 1 Diagram, 5 Graphs
Photofragmentation dynamics of molecular iodine was studied as a response to the joint illumination with femtosecond 800 nm near-infrared and 13 nm extreme ultraviolet (XUV) pulses delivered by the free-electron laser facility FLASH. The interaction of the molecular target with two light pulses of different wavelengths but comparable pulse energy elucidates a complex intertwined electronic and nuclear dynamics. To follow distinct pathways out of a multitude of reaction channels, the recoil of created ionic fragments is analyzed. The delayed XUV pulse provides a way of following molecular photodissociation of I2 with a characteristic time-constant of (55 ± 10) fs after the laser-induced formation of antibonding states. A preceding XUV pulse, on the other hand, preferably creates a 4d-1 inner-shell vacancy followed by the fast Auger cascade with a revealed characteristic time constant τA2=(23±11) fs for the second Auger decay transition. Some fraction of molecular cationic states undergoes subsequent Coulomb explosion, and the evolution of the launched molecular wave packet on the repulsive Coulomb potential was accessed by the laser-induced postionization. A further unexpected photofragmentation channel, which relies on the collective action of XUV and laser fields, is attributed to a laser-promoted charge transfer transition in the exploding molecule. [ABSTRACT FROM AUTHOR]
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