A modified one-dimensional laser translation photofragmentation spectrometer is used to selectively measure the recoil velocity of iodine atoms in different electronic states produced from the photodissociation of organic iodides. It is shown that this technique can distinguish between statistical1 and rapid dissociation from the value of the recoil velocity and the spatial distribution of the photoproduced iodine atoms. For rapid dissociations, one can further determine the amount of energy redistribution in curve crossing2 as well as the geometry of the ground state of the radical produced in the photodissociation of cyclic iodine isomers, e.g., iodocyclohexanes.3 For moderately rapid dissociations for which the dissociation times are comparable to molecular rotations, the rate of energy distribution prior to dissociation (e.g., in a transition state?) is determined.4

© 1992 Optical Society of America

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