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We report a novel method to reversibly attach and detach hydrogen molecules to positively charged sodium clusters formed inside a helium nanodroplet host matrix. It is based on the controlled production of multiply charged helium droplets which, after picking up sodium atoms and exposure to H2 vapor, lead to the formation of Nam+(H2)n clusters, whose population was accurately measured using a time-of-flight mass spectrometer. The mass spectra reveal particularly favorable Na+(H2)n and Na2+(H2)n clusters for specific “magic” numbers of attached hydrogen molecules. The energies and structures of these clusters have been investigated by means of quantum-mechanical calculations employing analytical interaction potentials based on ab initio electronic structure calculations. A good agreement is found between the experimental and the theoretical magic numbers.
Physical Chemistry Chemical Physics
Royal Society of Chemistry
Digital Object Identifier (DOI)
S. Kollotzek, J. Campos-Martínez, M. Bartolomei, F. Pirani, L. Tiefenthaler, M. Hernández, T. Lazaro, E. Zunzunegui-Bru, T. Gonzalez-Lezana, J. Hernández-Rojas, J. Bretón, O. Echt, P. Scheier, Phys. Chem. Chem. Phys. 25 (2023) 462-470