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2.1.1 Atomic Oscillators

All molecules are vibrating. For simplicity, we can imagine that molecules are point masses (the atoms) connected by springs (the chemical bonds). For a diatomic molecule, the vibrational motion is simple oscillation in the separation between the two atoms. A classical mechanical analysis of this motion (assuming a fixed total vibrational energy) results in sinusoidal oscillation: {insert figure here}.

John S. Riley, DSB Scientific Consulting