Abstract

The ir emission spectrum of nitrogen from 1 μ to 5 μ wavelength, arising from transitions between excited electronic states of the molecule and the atom, is presented and discussed. This investigation was undertaken to survey the near ir for possible auroral emission features and to extend the electronic emission spectrum of the common atmospheric gases into the ir. This report is concerned primarily with dc discharges in flowing nitrogen at pressures from 14 Torr to 10 Torr. Under the conditions of the experiment, most of the molecular radiation is due to transitions between the W3Δu, B3Πg, and A3Σu+ states, and eight new bands have been assigned to the W3ΔuB3Πg system. Nineteen atomic emission features are assigned to transitions between known states of NI and three to those of OI. None of these emission lines has been previously reported. The strong impurity emission feature, the 4–5 transition in atomic hydrogen (Brackett α), is discussed as a promising channel for studying the galactic center.

© 1970 Optical Society of America

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