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Vibrational relaxation and microsolvation of DF after F-atom reactions in polar solvents

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Science  30 Jan 2015:
Vol. 347, Issue 6221, pp. 530-533
DOI: 10.1126/science.aaa0103

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Deuterium fluoride gets born shivering

Modern spectroscopic techniques can analyze collisions between gas phase molecules in exquisite detail, highlighting exactly which vibrations and rotations come into play. However, much chemistry of interest takes place in solution, where it's harder to tease out what happens. Dunning et al. applied infrared spectroscopy to study solution-phase formation of deuterium fluoride (DF) from F atoms, a longstanding test bed of gas phase dynamics. The DF product vibrated for a surprisingly long time before dissipating its energy to the surrounding solvent molecules.

Science, this issue p. 530

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