Theoretical research in atomic physics

Professor Jogindra M. Wadehra

The emphasis of our work is on investigating theoretically the scattering processes involving several target atoms and molecules. The projectiles consist of positrons (antiparticles of electrons) and electrons impacting on various targets. The systems we have studied include rare gas atoms, alkali atoms, alkaline-earth metals, and some light molecules. We have calculated, and compared with experimental data, the cross sections for elastic and inelastic scattering and for the ionization of inner shells of various atoms by the impact of both positrons and electrons.

Our other research interests include investigations of the production of negative ions by the process of dissociative electron attachment to several light molecules. The rates of negative ion production by this process are strongly enhanced if the attaching molecule is initially rovibrationally excited. As an extension of this research project, we have calculated the cross sections for the dissociative attachment, vibrational excitation and dissociation of simple molecules (H2 and its five isotopes, LiH and two isotopes of Li2) by electron impact. Atomic and molecular collision processes play important and significant roles in astronomy and astrophysics