Undergraduate Honors Theses

Thesis Defended

Spring 2012

Document Type




First Advisor

Dr. Margaret Murnane

Second Advisor

Dr. Henry Kapteyn


Using high harmonic generation in a pump-probe geometry, we populate and measure the 2pπu potential in D+2. Cold target recoil ion momentum spectroscopy (COLTRIMS) provides the ability to measure full three-dimensional momenta of ion coincidence pairs, enabling full reconstruction of nuclear dynamics. Identification of single ion, ion pair and electron-ion detections confirms the observed state and shows mechanisms through which the nuclear wave packet may be redistributed among other molecular states in a controlled fashion. We quantify the observation via simulation of the time independent Schr¨odinger equation. Excellent agreement between theory and experiment enables practical implementation of the calculations to further study dynamics. This complete characterization of the potential curve and the dynamics it produces demonstrate a powerful tool poised to study crossings in the 2pπu state, as well as coherent control mechanisms.