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We have measured the forward-backward asymmetry of photoelectron angular distributions produced in the vacuum ultraviolet photoionization of helium. This asymmetry, a consequence of the breakdown of the dipole approximation, measures the real part of the ratio of the quadrupole and dipole matrix elements. In the autoionization region, the strong energy dependence of the asymmetry permits an experimental separation of the ratio of those magnitudes from their phase difference. We experimentally determined the Fano parameters of the 2p21D2 quadrupole resonance, and report improved values of the width Γ and line profile parameter q from those previously available from electron scattering. Off resonance, the smooth energy dependence of the asymmetry is found to agree well with the theoretical treatment presented here which incorporates higher multipole effects.


Atomic, Molecular and Optical Physics | Inorganic Chemistry | Materials Chemistry | Nuclear | Physical Chemistry


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