Quantum dynamics of tunneling dominated reactions at low temperatures

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We report a quantum dynamics study of the Li + HF → LiF + H reaction at low temperatures of interest to cooling and trapping experiments. Contributions from non-zero partial waves are analyzed and results show narrow resonances in the energy dependence of the cross section that survive partial wave summation. The computations are performed using the ABC code and a simple modification of the ABC code that enables separate energy cutoffs for the reactant and product rovibrational energy levels is found to dramatically reduce the basis set size and computational expense. Results obtained using two ab initio electronic potential energy surfaces for the LiHF system show strong sensitivity to the choice of the potential. In particular, small differences in the barrier heights of the two potential surfaces are found to dramatically influence the reaction cross sections at low energies. Comparison with recent measurements of the reaction cross section (Bobbenkamp et al 2011 J. Chem. Phys. 135 204306) shows similar energy dependence in the threshold regime and an overall good agreement with experimental data compared to previous theoretical results. Also, usefulness of a recently introduced method for ultracold reactions that employ the quantum close-coupling method at short-range and the multichannel quantum defect theory at long-range, is demonstrated in accurately evaluating product state-resolved cross sections for D + H2 and H + D2 reactions.