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We provide a dynamical interpretation of the recently identified 'roaming' mechanism for molecular dissociation reactions in terms of geometrical structures in phase space. These are NHIMs (Normally Hyperbolic Invariant Manifolds) and their stable/unstable manifolds that define transition states for ion-molecule association or dissociation reactions. The associated dividing surfaces rigorously define a roaming region of phase space, in which both reactive and non reactive trajectories can be trapped for arbitrarily long times. (C) 2013 The Authors. Published by Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
Bibliographical note20 pages, 6 figures
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