Precision measurements are performed on highly excited vibrational quantum states of molecular hydrogen. The v = 12, J = 0 - 3 rovibrational levels of H<inf>2</inf> (X 1 Σ g +), lying only 2000 cm-1 below the first dissociation limit, were populated by photodissociation of H<inf>2</inf>S and their level energies were accurately determined by two-photon Doppler-free spectroscopy. A comparison between the experimental results on v = 12 level energies with the best ab initio calculations shows a good agreement, where the present experimental accuracy of 3.5 × 10-3 cm-1 is more precise than theory, hence providing a gateway to further test theoretical advances in this benchmark quantum system.
Niu, M., Salumbides, E. J., & Ubachs, W. M. G. (2015). Communication: Test of quantum chemistry in vibrationally hot hydrogen molecules. Journal of Chemical Physics, 143(8), 081102. . https://doi.org/10.1063/1.4929568