Ion-induced molecular growth in clusters of small hydrocarbon chains

M Gatchell and R Delaunay and G D'Angelo and A Mika and K Kulyk and A Domaracka and P Rousseau and H Zettergren and BA Huber and H Cederquist, PHYSICAL CHEMISTRY CHEMICAL PHYSICS, 19, 19665-19672 (2017).

DOI: 10.1039/c7cp02090b

We report on studies of collisions between 3 keV Ar+ projectile ions and neutral targets of isolated 1,3-butadiene (C4H6) molecules and cold, loosely bound clusters of these molecules. We identify molecular growth processes within the molecular clusters that appears to be driven by knockout processes and that could result in the formation of (aromatic) ring structures. These types of reactions are not unique to specific projectile ions and target molecules, but will occur whenever atoms or ions with suitable masses and kinetic energies collide with aggregates of matter, such as carbonaceous grains in the interstellar medium or aerosol nanoparticles in the atmosphere.

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