Photoelectron imaging as a quantum chemistry visualization tool

Emily R. Grumbling, Kostyantyn Pichugin, Richard Mabbs, Andrei Sanov

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

14 Scopus citations


An overview and simple example of photoelectron imaging is presented, highlighting its efficacy as a pedagogical tool for visualizing quantum phenomena. Specifically, photoelectron imaging of H- (the simplest negative ion) is used to demonstrate several quantum mechanical principles. This example could be incorporated into an introductory quantum chemistry course to extend the traditional discussion of the photoelectric effect and photoelectron spectroscopy into the area of matter waves. In working through this example, several core quantum-mechanical topics and concepts have been explored, such as conservation of angular momentum, the transition dipole moment, components of the hydrogenic orbitals, the Born interpretation of the wave function, and the theory of quantum measurement.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1515-1520
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Chemical Education
Issue number11
StatePublished - Nov 1 2011


  • Analogies/Transfer
  • Atomic Properties/Structure
  • Atomic Spectroscopy
  • Lasers
  • Physical Chemistry
  • Quantum Chemistry
  • Spectroscopy
  • Upper-Division Undergraduate

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Chemistry
  • Education


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