Chemistry induced during the thermalization and transport of positrons and secondary electrons in gases and liquids

Srdjan MARJANOVIĆ, Ana Banković, Ronald White, Steven Buckman, Gustavo Garcia, Gordana Malović, Saša Dujko, Zoran Petrović

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

8 Citations (Scopus)


The recent availability of cross sections for positron (and positronium) interactions has made it possible to calculate transport properties and rates of collisions, and study in a quantitative fashion some aspects of positron-induced processes and their effects on living tissue. This paper models the interaction of primary positrons, and their secondary electrons, with water vapour (and subsequently liquid) using complete sets of cross sections predominately based on experimental binary collision data. We use a simple procedure to represent the presence of organic molecules where we look for dissociation of methane as a prototype of organic molecule dissociation. We isolate this particular process in order to establish whether the degree of damage is directly associated with the energy deposited in the tissue or whether some specific processes may cause excessive damage even with little energy deposition. We thus report on the relative contributions of initial positrons and secondary electrons in inducing
dissociation, the spatial and energy profiles of individual collisional events, and
positron/secondary electron tracks. It was found that secondary electrons induce 2–3 times more dissociations than the original positrons and with a longer range.
Original languageEnglish
Article number 025016
Number of pages7
JournalPlasma Sources Science and Technology
Publication statusPublished (in print/issue) - 2 Mar 2015


  • electrons
  • positrons
  • dissociation
  • radiation damage
  • Monte Carlo simulation


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