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Journal Article

Infrared resonance-enhanced multiphoton ionization spectroscopy of magnesium oxide clusters

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van Heijnsbergen, D., von Helden, G., Meijer, G., & Duncan, M. A. (2002). Infrared resonance-enhanced multiphoton ionization spectroscopy of magnesium oxide clusters. The Journal of Chemical Physics, 116(6): 2400. doi:10.1063/1.1432999.

Cite as: https://hdl.handle.net/21.11116/0000-000B-4ED4-F
Neutral (MgO)n clusters are produced in a molecular beam by laser vaporization in a pulsed-nozzle cluster source. These clusters are ionized via multiphoton absorption from either an ultraviolet excimer laser or a far-infrared free electron laser. While ultraviolet ionization produces mass spectra consistent with previous measurements, infrared ionization produces higher molecular weight ions from the same nascent source distribution. Ultraviolet ionization occurs by direct electronic excitation/ionization, while infrared ionization occurs by vibrational excitation followed by thermionic electron emission. In both cases, prominent masses are observed corresponding to cubic nanocrystals with near equal x:y:z dimensions. By tuning the IR wavelength while recording the mass-resolved ion yield, vibrational spectra are obtained revealing two resonances near 16 and 22 microns. Clusters up to 300 atoms in size are studied, and spectra exhibit a gradual variation with size, converging to positions near to, but not matching the bulk phonon frequencies. Structural implications of these vibrational spectra are investigated.