Mid-Infrared Spectroscopy of Molecular Ions in Helium Nanodroplets
High resolution IR spectra of aniline, styrene and 1,1-diphenylethylene cations embedded in superfluid helium nanodroplets have been recorded in the 300-1700 cm-1 range using the free-electron laser FELIX as radiation source. Comparison of the spectra with available gas phase data reveals that the helium environment induces no significant matrix shift nor leads to an observable line broadening of the resonances. In addition, the IR spectra have provided new and improved vibrational transition frequencies for the cations investigated, as well as for neutral aniline and styrene. Indications have been found that the ions desolvate from the droplets after excitation by a non-evaporative process in which they are ejected from the helium droplets. The kinetic energy of the ejected ions is found to be ion specific and to depend only weakly on the excitation energy.