Anion and cation emission following water dissociation was studied for 6.6-keV 16O++H2O collisions. Absolute cross sections for the emission of all positively and negatively charged fragments, differential in both energy and observation angle, were measured. The fragments formed in hard, binary collisions appearing in peaks were distinguishable from those created in soft collisions with many-body dynamics that result in a broad energy spectrum. A striking feature is that anions and cations are emitted with similar energy and angular distributions, with a nearly constant ratio of about 1:100 for H-to H+. Model calculations were performed at different levels of complexity. Four-body scattering simulations reproduce the measured fragment distributions if adequate kinetic-energy release of the target is taken into account. Providing even further insight into the underlying processes, predictions of a thermodynamic model indicate that transfer ionization at small impact parameters is the dominant mechanism for H+ creation. The present findings confirm our earlier observation that in molecular fragmentation induced by slow, singly charged ions, the charge states of the emitted hydrogen fragments follow a simple statistical distribution independent of the way they are formed.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Atomic and Molecular Physics, and Optics