Joseph W. Rich - East Aurora NY
John W. Raymonda - Williamsville NY
Calspan Corporation - Buffalo NY
Laser radiation is employed to initiate and promote chemical reactions by creating states of molecular vibrational mode excitation exceeding those appropriate to the translational temperature of the medium in one or more of the reactants. In favorable cases, vibrational excitation in a certain vibrational normal mode of a reactant will act to accelerate the rate of a desired chemical reaction. The reactants can be pressurized so that their vibration-rotation spectrum can be broadened to the point that laser radiation can be absorbed without the need for exact coincidence between a line or lines of the spectrum of the reactant and that of available lasers. Provision can be made for isolation and analysis of products, recycling of unused reactants, temperature control of reactants and real-time monitoring of the state of vibrational excitation of the reactants.