Atomic Lifetimes From Molecular Spectroscopy

Although molecular properties are clearly related to the properties of the constituent atoms, it has seldom been possible to make precision measurements of these atomic properties by examining the molecules. Over the last year or so, however, molecular spectroscopy has been shown to be a powerful technique for determining atomic lifetimes and has provided the most precise alkali lifetimes yet reported, at levels ranging from 0.3% to 0.03%.

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