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Published July 8, 2001 | Published
Journal Article Open

Femtochemistry of mass-selected negative-ion clusters of dioxygen: Charge-transfer and solvation dynamics


Femtosecond, time-resolved photoelectron spectroscopy is used to investigate the dissociation dynamics of mass-selected anionic molecular-oxygen clusters. The observed transient photoelectron signal for the clusters (O_2)^−_n  (n = 3–5) shows the O^−_2 production; for n = 1 and 2, we observe no time-dependence at this wavelength of 800 nm. The observed transients are bi-exponential in form with two distinct time constants, but with clear trends, for all investigated cluster sizes. These striking observations describe the reaction pathways of the solvated core and we elucidate two primary processes: Charge transfer with concomitant nuclear motion, and direct dissociation of the O^−_4 core-ion via electron recombination; the former takes 700–2700 fs, while the latter is on a shorter time scale, 110–420 fs. Both rates decrease differently upon increasing cluster size, indicating the critical role of step-wise solvation.

Additional Information

© 2001 American Institute of Physics. Received 28 March 2001; accepted 17 May 2001. NJK was supported by postdoctoral fellowships program from the Korea Science & Engineering Foundation (KOSEF) and by Caltech. TMB acknowledges financial support from the Alexander von Humboldt foundation and is grateful to Professor Ludger Wöste for help and support.

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