Publication Details

Hansen, C. S., Kirk, B. B., Blanksby, S. J., O'Hair, R. A. J. & Trevitt, A. J. (2013). UV photodissociation action spectroscopy of haloanilinium ions in a linear quadrupole ion trap mass spectrometer. Journal of the American Society for Mass Spectrometry, 24 (6), 932-940.


UV-vis photodissociation action spectroscopy is becoming increasingly prevalent because of advances in, and commercial availability of, ion trapping technologies and tunable laser sources. This study outlines in detail an instrumental arrangement, combining a commercial ion-trap mass spectrometer and tunable nanosecond pulsed laser source, for performing fully automated photodissociation action spectroscopy on gas-phase ions. The components of the instrumentation are outlined, including the optical and electronic interfacing, in addition to the control software for automating the experiment and performing online analysis of the spectra. To demonstrate the utility of this ensemble, the photodissociation action spectra of 4-chloroanilinium, 4-bromoanilinium, and 4-iodoanilinium cations are presented and discussed. Multiple photoproducts are detected in each case and the photoproduct yields are followed as a function of laser wavelength. It is shown that the wavelength-dependent partitioning of the halide loss, H loss, and NH3 loss channels can be broadly rationalized in terms of the relative carbon-halide bond dissociation energies and processes of energy redistribution. The photodissociation action spectrum of (phenyl)Ag2 + is compared with a literature spectrum as a further benchmark.

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