Physicists from the Laboratory of Quantum Mechanics of Molecules and Radiation Processes of Tomsk State University and colleagues from the USA, France, and Hungary have obtained fundamental results in molecular physics. The team of scientists is investigating the properties of the ozone molecule. Their two publications are included in the prestigious 2020 HOT Articles collection by the British Royal Society’s leading international journal Physical Chemistry Chemical Physics.
The international team is investigating the formation and decay of ozone (O3), its characteristics and properties at the molecular level when interacting with radiation. The results will help to control the quality of the ozone layer, which is involved in forming the Earth’s atmosphere and climate, and affects air quality, as well as protecting the planet from harsh ultraviolet radiation.
New calculations made it possible to qualitatively improve the understanding of the motion of nuclei inside the ozone molecule and showed better agreement with the experiment compared to previous works based on the Born-Oppenheimer model. The results show the possibility of delocalization of wave functions in high-energy quantum states and a new type of tunneling effect of oxygen atoms. Consequently, scientists believe, it is necessary to change the approaches to interpreting the results of experiments, for example, for the absorption spectra of radiation and dynamics in the phases of formation and decay of a molecule.