Studies of the Vibrational Relaxation of Diatomic Molecules in a Shock Heated Molecular Beam and Its Application to Ionization by Electron Impact,
YORK UNIV DOWNSVIEW (ONTARIO) DEPT OF PHYSICS
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The shock heated molecular beam technique was used to obtain vibrationally exicted oxygen, nitrogen and carbon monoxide molecules. The vibrational distribution of these diatomic molecules, in argon gas as the carrier gas of a shock heated molecular beam, has been calculated by considering atomic recombination and collisional excitation-de-excitation during the expansion. The vibrationally excited molecules, which correspond to vibrational temperatures Tv, in the range 1800 K to 7000 K, are used to examine the role played by vibrational excitation in both direct and dissociative electron impact ionization cross sections, over a range of electron energies from 50-500 eV.