Semiperipheral collisions in the 124Sn+64Ni reaction at 35 MeV/nucleon were studied using the forward part of the Charged Heavy Ion Mass and Energy Resolving Array. Nearly completely determined ternary events involving projectile like fragments (PLF), target like fragments (TLF), and intermediate mass fragments (IMF) were selected. A new method of studying the reaction mechanism, focusing on the analysis of the correlations between relative velocities in the IMF+PLF and IMF+LLF subsystems, is proposed. The relative velocity correlations provide information on the time sequence and time scale of the neck fragmentation processes leading to production of IMFs. It is shown that the majority of light IMFs are produced within 40-80 fm/c after the system starts to reseparate. Heavy IMFs are formed at times of about 120 fm/c or later and can be viewed as resulting from two-step (sequential)
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