The fast-neutral-beam technique is a versatile approach to the determination of absolute cross sections for electron-impact ionization of atoms, stable molecules as well as free radicals and metastable species. A fast neutral beam of the species under study is prepared by charge-transfer neutralization of a mass-selected ion beam and the species are subsequently ionized by an electron beam. Mass- and energy-dispersive selection separates singly from multiply charged ions and parent from fragment ions and allows the determination of partial ionization cross sections. Here we describe some major improvements that were made recently to the fast-beam apparatus that has been used extensively for ionization cross section measurements for the past 15 years in our group. Experiments using well-established ionization cross sections in conjunction with extensive ion trajectory simulations were carried out to test the satisfactory performance of the modified fast-neutral-beam apparatus. We also report absolute partial cross sections for the formation of various singly charged positive ions produced by electron impact on SiCl3 for impact energies from threshold to 200 eV in the modified fast-beam apparatus.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- General Physics and Astronomy