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POLARIZATION OF ATOMIC POTASSIUM FLUORESCENCE EXCITED BY LASER PHOTODISSOCIATION OF K2

Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: http://hdl.handle.net/1811/17546

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Title: POLARIZATION OF ATOMIC POTASSIUM FLUORESCENCE EXCITED BY LASER PHOTODISSOCIATION OF K2
Creators: Zafiropulos, V.; Zeng, X.; Lyyra, A. M.; Kleiber, P. D.; Sando, K. M.; Stwalley, W. C.
Issue Date: 1988
Abstract: A tunable dye laser was used to excite $K_{2}$ from the ground $X(^{1}\Sigma^{+}_{g})$ state into the continuum of the $B(^{1}\Sigma_{u})$ state. This results in dissociation of the molecule producing an excited $K {^{2}}P_{3/2}$ atom which fluoresces. By monitoring the atomic $D_{2}$ fluorescence under these molecular beam (collision-free) conditions, we were able to measure the pure bound-free absorption profile. At the same time, the polarization of the atomic fluorescence was measured for different laser excitation frequencies. We believe this to be the first observation of a large variation in the polarization, ranging from $15 \pm 2\%$ to $-6.3 \pm 0.4\%$ as a function of laser excitation wave-length. The results are explained a) using the theory of Van Brunt and Zare1, which predicts a maximum polarization of 14.3\% (axial recoil) and a minimum of -7.7\% (transverse recoil) and b) the Rotating molecule $theory^{2}$ where the polarization is a function of the angle of rotation of a half collision. Classical, semiclassical and quantum-mechanical calculations in the $K_{2}$ case were also performed and a comparison with the experimental results is given.
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/1811/17546
Other Identifiers: 1988-RB-11
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