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Atomic, Molecular, Optical and Plasma Physics

The topics covered by the following papers belong to the general field of Photon Induced Dynamics in Molecules and Clusters. The suggestion of collecting this series of articles came during the 9th European Workshop on Molecular Spectroscopy and Photon Induced Dynamics held in Toulouse (France) from November 7-11, 1997. It should be stressed however that the papers have been submitted and reviewed as ordinary articles to EPJ D and thus they represent original research which has not been published elsewhere.

The work presented in this issue covers a wide field, both theoretically and experimentally, ranging from atomic to molecular and chemical physics. The atomic physics papers deal with photon-induced collisions and collisional processes with cold atoms. In the molecular and chemical physics section, the contributions involve femtosecond wave packet dynamics, theory on intramolecular vibrational quantum chaos and on unimolecular reactions, bimolecular reactions, molecular multiphoton ionization and laser applications to atmospheric pollution monitoring. In the clusters and nanostructures section we have included contributions on the theory of excitation of metallic clusters with high intensity laser pulses, simulations of spectra of a diatomic molecule embedded in a rare gas matrix, and measurements of photoionization thresholds metal atoms and clustered with ammonia. Finally, a paper describing new laser applications to atmospheric pollution monitoring can be found in the optical physics section.

The ensemble of papers collected is not intended to cover all the aspects of photoinduced dynamical processes but rather to provide snapshots of some of the promising directions of experimental and theoretical research in this topical and exciting field.

Jacques Vigué, J. Alberto Beswick

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