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Complete molecular valence-electron spectra were measured for CO. Unexpectedly, discrete lines at low kinetic energies were found, superimposed on a continuous energy spectrum representing direct double-ionization processes. The appearance of these lines is discussed in the context of the formation of the C++O+ ion pair near its associated threshold at 38.4 eV. It is ascribed to valence-excited repulsive (CO+)* states, which dissociate to a large part rapidly into atomic fragments before electronic relaxation takes place. From our spectra, partial cross sections for the different processes leading to dissociative valence double ionization are derived.


Atomic, Molecular and Optical Physics | Physical Chemistry


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