22-pole Ion Trap

Producing cold molecules becomes more difficult as the size of the species increases. This is due to the fact that larger molecules have more internal vibrations where the energy can be stored. Therefore very big molecules, like polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) and fullerenes, cannot be cooled efficiently during the short-time scales involved in a supersonic expansion. An alternative approach is to collect the ions in an ion trap and cool them down through collisions with a cold buffer gas, like helium or argon.

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