THE STRUCTURE OF IONS
The interaction of electrons and positive ions with liquid helium is very strong and locally modifies the environment. Positive ions polarize the surrounding fluid. Electrostriction produces such a large pressure increase near the ion that the melting transition appears at a distance of a few Ångstroms from the ion. The ion is surrounded by a solvation shell of solid helium-ice called a snowball. On the other hand, electrons interact with the electronic clouds of the atoms of the liquid via short-range exchange repulsion forces. As a consequence, electrons are encompassed by an empty cavity of approximately 20 Ångstroms in diameter. This chapter describes how thermodynamics and quantum mechanics allows the researchers to calculate the charge structures.
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