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Issue 37, 2009
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Electron attachment to trinitrotoluene (TNT) embedded in He droplets: complete freezing of dissociation intermediates in an extended range of electron energies

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Abstract

Electron attachment to the explosive trinitrotoluene (TNT) embedded in Helium droplets (TNT@He) generates the non-decomposed complexes (TNT)n, but no fragment ions in the entire energy range 0–12 eV. This strongly contrasts the behavior of single TNT molecules in the gas phase at ambient temperatures, where electron capture leads to a variety of different fragmentation products via different dissociative electron attachment (DEA) reactions. Single TNT molecules decompose by attachment of an electron at virtually no extra energy reflecting the explosive nature of the compound. The complete freezing of dissociation intermediates in TNT embedded in the droplet is explained by the particular mechanisms of DEA in nitrobenzenes, which is characterized by complex rearrangement processes in the transient negative ion (TNI) prior to decomposition. These mechanisms provide the condition for effective energy withdrawal from the TNI into the dissipative environment thereby completely suppressing its decomposition.

Graphical abstract: Electron attachment to trinitrotoluene (TNT) embedded in He droplets: complete freezing of dissociation intermediates in an extended range of electron energies

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Article information


Submitted
24 Apr 2009
Accepted
02 Jun 2009
First published
30 Jun 2009

Phys. Chem. Chem. Phys., 2009,11, 8240-8243
Article type
Paper

Electron attachment to trinitrotoluene (TNT) embedded in He droplets: complete freezing of dissociation intermediates in an extended range of electron energies

A. Mauracher, H. Schöbel, F. Ferreira da Silva, A. Edtbauer, C. Mitterdorfer, S. Denifl, T. D. Märk, E. Illenberger and P. Scheier, Phys. Chem. Chem. Phys., 2009, 11, 8240
DOI: 10.1039/B908192E

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