Research Papers in Physics and Astronomy


Date of this Version



Published in Physical Review A 20, 787 - 796 (1979).
©1979 The American Physical Society
DOI: 10.1103/PhysRevA.20.787


Cross sections for the ejection of electrons from hydrogen and nitrogen by protons have been measured as a function of the energy and angle of ejection of the electrons at incident proton energies of 5-70 keV and 100 keV for hydrogen. The range of angles measured was 10-160° and the electron energy range was 1.5-300 eV. The doubly differential cross sections were also integrated over angle, over electron energy, or over both to obtain singly differential and total cross sections for electron production. Average electron energies were also calculated from the data. The angular distributions of electrons are peaked in the forward direction but become more isotropic as the proton energy decreases. Nitrogen yields a more isotropic distribution than hydrogen. In this range of proton energies the cross sections integrated over angle are found to fall off approximately exponentially with electron energy, and a simple empirical equation has been found that describes the singly differential and total cross sections within a factor of 2 for several targets. A theoretical interpretation of this result in terms of the molecular promotion model is given in which Meyerhof's method of calculating cross sections for K-shell excitation is applied for the first time to the ionization of outer shells of atoms.

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