Dissociation Energy of the Hydrogen Molecule at 10-9 Accuracy

C. F. Cheng, J. Hussels, M. Niu, H. L. Bethlem, K. S.E. Eikema, E. J. Salumbides, W. Ubachs, M. Beyer, N. Hölsch, J. A. Agner, F. Merkt, L. G. Tao, S. M. Hu, Ch Jungen

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The ionization energy of ortho-H2 has been determined to be EIo(H2)/(hc)=124 357.238 062(25) cm-1 from measurements of the GK(1,1)-X(0,1) interval by Doppler-free, two-photon spectroscopy using a narrow band 179-nm laser source and the ionization energy of the GK(1,1) state by continuous-wave, near-infrared laser spectroscopy. EIo(H2) was used to derive the dissociation energy of H2, D0N=1(H2), at 35 999.582 894(25) cm-1 with a precision that is more than one order of magnitude better than all previous results. The new result challenges calculations of this quantity and represents a benchmark value for future relativistic and QED calculations of molecular energies.

Original languageEnglish
Article number013001
Pages (from-to)1-5
Number of pages5
JournalPhysical Review Letters
Issue number1
Early online date3 Jul 2018
Publication statusPublished - 6 Jul 2018


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