Shedding light on atomic structure

Scientists from Germany and Russia have investigated how electrons are scattered by a laser, making clearer the configuration of electrons in an atom, according to a study published in Physical Review Letters.

The team of physicists, which included a researcher from the Moscow Engineering Physics Institute, investigated how electrons, freed from an atom by a laser in a process called ionization, re-collide with that atom as they are accelerated back towards it by the laser’s electric field.

By using the tools of quantum physics — like Schrödinger’s wave equation — to predict how the electrons are scattered by the laser and the subsequent collisions undergone by the energized electrons, they were able to compare the number and intensity of ejected electrons, known as the photoelectron spectra, to gain a better understanding of the arrangement of electrons in the atom.

This article was first published by Springer Nature. Read the original article here.