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Supercollision events in weak collisional energy transfer of highly excited species

Chemical Physics Letters
Publication Date
DOI: 10.1016/0009-2614(91)80229-q


Abstract The results are reported of a series of trajectory studies on Xe colliding with highly excited azulene, obtained using the method of Lim and Gilbert. These show a small fraction (about 1%) of supercollisions (ones which transfer an abnormally large amount of energy), in accord with results from several different experimental techniques. The trajectories show that these rare supercollisions occur when a hydrogen atom is compressed between the bath gas and part or all of the carbon framework. This produces a strong repulsion between the Xe and H as the relative coordinate is driven high up the repulsive wall; if vibrational phases, or rotation, of the substrate framework are such that the bath gas and substrate separate during this compression, the final energy transfer is large.

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