We report on the focusing and guiding of the van der Waals complex formed between benzonitrile molecules (C(6)H(5)CN) and argon atoms in a cold molecular beam using an ac electric quadrupole guide. The distribution of quantum states in the guided beam is non-thermal, because the transmission efficiency depends on the state-dependent effective dipole moment in the applied electric fields. At a specific ac frequency, however, the excitation spectrum can be described by a thermal distribution at a rotational temperature of 0.8 K. From the observed transmission characteristics and a combination of trajectory and Stark-energy calculations we conclude that the permanent electric dipole moment of benzonitrile remains unchanged upon the attachment of the argon atom to within ±5%. By exploiting the different dipole-moment-to-mass ([micro sign]/m) ratios of the complex and the benzonitrile monomer, transmission can be selectively suppressed for or, in the limit of 0 K rotational temperature, restricted to the complex
To submit an update or takedown request for this paper, please submit an Update/Correction/Removal Request.