Triatomic Hydrogen
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Momentum vector correlation maps for three-particle fragmentation of neutral triatomic hydrogen near its ionization threshold
P.C. Fechner and H. Helm
Department of Molecular and Optical Physics, Albert-Ludwigs-Universität, Hermann-Herder-Strasse 3, D-79104  Freiburg, Germany

Phys. Rev. A 82, 052523 (2010) [7 pages]


Three-particle dissociation of high-lying Rydberg states of H3, in the immediate vicinity of the ionization threshold, is induced by an external electric field. We observe that the momentum vector correlation map of the center-of-mass motion of the fragments changes rapidly with electronic energy. Near- and above-threshold substantial contributions of fragment orientations which are characteristic of near-linear geometry appear, i.e., two atoms with opposing momenta, the third atom being nearly at rest. This finding is similar to observations by Strasser et al. [Phys. Rev. A 66, 032719 (2002)], who studied dissociative recombination of cold H3+ ions with slow electrons. We discuss the likely dissociation paths responsible for the observed correlation.

DOI: 10.1103/PhysRevA.82.052523
PACS: 33.15.Fm, 31.50.Gh, 33.80.Gj, 34.50.Lf

© 2010 The American Physical Society