Nonadiabatic Interactions in the Cl + H2 Reaction Probed by ClH2- and ClD2- Photoelectron Imaging

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Science  04 Jan 2008:
Vol. 319, Issue 5859, pp. 72-75
DOI: 10.1126/science.1150602

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The degree of electronic and nuclear coupling in the Cl + H2 reaction has become a vexing problem in chemical dynamics. We report slow electron velocity-map imaging (SEVI) spectra of ClH2 and ClD2. These spectra probe the reactant valley of the neutral reaction potential energy surface, where nonadiabatic transitions responsible for reactivity of the Cl excited spin-orbit state with H2 would occur. The SEVI spectra reveal progressions in low-frequency Cl·H2 bending and stretching modes, and are compared to simulations with and without nonadiabatic couplings between the Cl spin-orbit states. Although nonadiabatic effects are small, their inclusion improves agreement with experiment. This comparison validates the theoretical treatment, especially of the nonadiabatic effects, in this critical region of the Cl + H2 reaction, and suggests strongly that these effects are minor.

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