Quantum Theory of Chemical Reaction Dynamics

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It is now possible to use rigorous quantum scattering theory to perform accurate calculations on the detailed state-to-state dynamics of chemical reactions in the gas phase. Calculations on simple reactions, such as H + D2 [right arrow] HD + D and F + H2 [right arrow] HF + H, compete with experiment in their accuracy. Recent advances in theory promise to extend such accurate predictions to more complicated reactions, such as OH + H2 [right arrow] H2 O + H, and even to reactions of molecules on solid surfaces. New experimental techniques for probing reaction transition states, such as negative-ion photodetachment spectroscopy and pump-probe femtosecond spectroscopy, are stimulating the development of new theories.

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