Shop Windows to the Universe

Arches National Park Geology Tour provides an extensive, visually rich description of the geology of Arches, by Deborah Ragland, Ph.D. See our DVD collection.

Photodissociation of Water (H2O)

Photodissociation of water.
Animation courtesy COMET.

This animation illustrates the process of photodissociation of water. When an extreme ultraviolet (EUV) photon strikes a water molecule (H2O) , it photodissociates the molecule into two separate parts - a hydrogen (H) atom and a hydroxyl radical (OH). The energy from the photon breaks one of the chemical bonds that hold the water molecule together.

You will need to have the latest version of the Flash player to see this animation.

Photodissociation of Molecular Nitrogen

Photodissociation of Molecular Oxygen

Photodissociation of the Hydroxyl Radical

Last modified February 17, 2006 by Randy Russell.

Shop Windows to the Universe Science Store!

Our online store includes issues of NESTA's quarterly journal, The Earth Scientist, full of classroom activities on different topics in Earth and space science, as well as books on science education!

Windows to the Universe Community

News

Opportunities

You might also be interested in:

Cool It! Game

Check out our online store - minerals, fossils, books, activities, jewelry, and household items!...more

Photodissociation

Sometimes when a photon hits a molecule, the energy from the photon causes the molecule to break apart. Scientists use the term "photodissociation" for such events. Photodissociation plays a very important...more

Photon

Light is very strange. Sometimes it is best to think of light as a series of waves. At other times, it is useful to think of light as a swarm of particles. When we think of light as particles, we call...more

Molecules

Most things around us are made of groups of atoms bonded together into packages called molecules. The atoms in a molecule are held together because they share or exchange electrons. Molecules are made...more

Nitric Acid - HNO3

Nitric acid is a colorless, corrosive liquid and a toxic acid which can cause severe burns. Nitric acid consists of nitrogen, oxygen, and hydrogen atoms. Nitric acid, in its gas phase, is present in very...more

Sulfuric Acid - H2SO4

Sulfuric acid is a viscous, oily liquid and a strong acid which can cause severe burns. Sulfuric acid consists of sulfur, oxygen, and hydrogen atoms. Sulfuric acid is one of the components of acid rain....more

Methane - CH4

Methane is gas that is found in small quantities in Earth's atmosphere. Methane is the simplest hydrocarbon, consisting of one carbon atom and four hydrogen atoms. Methane is a powerful greenhouse gas....more

Ammonia - NH3

Ammonia is a chemical compound that is a colorless, flammable gas at normal temperatures and pressures. Ammonia is toxic, corrosive to some materials, and has a pungent odor. An ammonia molecule (NH3)...more

Windows to the Universe, a project of the National Earth Science Teachers Association, is sponsored in part by the National Science Foundation and NASA, our Founding Partners (the American Geophysical Union and American Geosciences Institute) as well as through Institutional, Contributing, and Affiliate Partners, individual memberships and generous donors. Thank you for your support! NASA AGU AGI NSF