Electron-Atom and Electron-Molecule Collisions

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The papers collected in this volume have been presented during a workshop on Electron-Atom and Molecule Collisions held at the Centre for Interdisciplinary Studies of the University of Bielefeld in May 1980. This workshop, part of a larger program concerned with the Properties and Reactions of Isolated Molecules and Atoms, focused on the theory and computational techniques for the quanti- tative description of electron scattering phenomena. With the advances which have been made in the accurate quantum mechanical characterisation of bound states of atoms and molecules, the more complicated description of the unbound systems and resonances important in electron collision processes has matured too. As expli- cated in detail in the articles of this volume, the theory for the quantitative explanation of elastic and inelastic electron molecule collisions, of photo- and multiple photon ionization and even for electron impact ionization is well developed in a form which lends itself to a complete quantitative ab initio interpretation and pre- diction of the observable effects. Many of the experiences gained and the techniques which have evolved over the years in the com- putational characterization of bound states have become an essential basis for this development. To be sure, much needs to be done before we have a complete and detailed theoretical understanding of the known collisional processes and of the phenomena and effects, which may still be un- covered with the continuing refinement of the experimental tech- niques.