Ion collision-induced chemistry in pure and mixed loosely bound clusters of coronene and C60 molecules
Ionization, fragmentation and molecular growth have been studied in collisions of 22.5 keV He2+- or 3 keV Ar+-projectiles with pure loosely bound clusters of coronene (C24H12) molecules or with loosely bound mixed C60–C24H12 clusters by using mass spectrometry. The heavier and slower Ar+ projectiles induce prompt knockout–fragmentation – C- and/or H-losses – from individual molecules and highly efficient secondary molecular growth reactions before the clusters disintegrate on picosecond timescales. The lighter and faster He2+ projectiles have a higher charge and the main reactions are then ionization by ions that are not penetrating the clusters. This leads mostly to cluster fragmentation without molecular growth. However, here penetrating collisions may also lead to molecular growth but to a much smaller extent than with 3 keV Ar+. Here we present fragmentation and molecular growth mass distributions with 1 mass unit resolution, which reveals that the same numbers of C- and H-atoms often participate in the formation and breaking of covalent bonds inside the clusters. We find that masses close to those with integer numbers of intact coronene molecules, or with integer numbers of both intact coronene and C60 molecules, are formed where often one or several H-atoms are missing or have been added on. We also find that super-hydrogenated coronene is formed inside the clusters.
- This article is part of the themed collection: 2018 PCCP HOT Articles