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Permanent URL to this publication: http://dx.doi.org/10.5167/uzh-58666

Marsalek, O; Elles, C G; Pieniazek, P A; Pluharova, E; VandeVondele, J; Bradforth, S E; Jungwirth, P (2011). Chasing charge localization and chemical reactivity following photoionization in liquid water. Journal of Chemical Physics, 135(22):224510.

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The ultrafast dynamics of the cationic hole formed in bulk liquid water following ionization is investigated by ab initio molecular dynamics simulations and an experimentally accessible signature is suggested that might be tracked by femtosecond pump-probe spectroscopy. This is one of the fastest fundamental processes occurring in radiation-induced chemistry in aqueous systems and biological tissue. However, unlike the excess electron formed in the same process, the nature and time evolution of the cationic hole has been hitherto little studied. Simulations show that an initially partially delocalized cationic hole localizes within similar to 30 fs after which proton transfer to a neighboring water molecule proceeds practically immediately, leading to the formation of the OH radical and the hydronium cation in a reaction which can be formally written as H(2)O(+) + H(2)O -> OH + H(3)O(+). The exact amount of initial spin delocalization is, however, somewhat method dependent, being realistically described by approximate density functional theory methods corrected for the self-interaction error. Localization, and then the evolving separation of spin and charge, changes the electronic structure of the radical center. This is manifested in the spectrum of electronic excitations which is calculated for the ensemble of ab initio molecular dynamics trajectories using a quantum mechanics/molecular mechanics (QM/MM) formalism applying the equation of motion coupled-clusters method to the radical core. A clear spectroscopic signature is predicted by the theoretical model: as the hole transforms into a hydroxyl radical, a transient electronic absorption in the visible shifts to the blue, growing toward the near ultraviolet. Experimental evidence for this primary radiation-induced process is sought using femtosecond photoionization of liquid water excited with two photons at 11 eV. Transient absorption measurements carried out with similar to 40 fs time resolution and broadband spectral probing across the near-UV and visible are presented and direct comparisons with the theoretical simulations are made. Within the sensitivity and time resolution of the current measurement, a matching spectral signature is not detected. This result is used to place an upper limit on the absorption strength and/or lifetime of the localized H(2)O((aq))(+) species. (C) 2011 American Institute of Physics. doi:10.1063/1.3664746]


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Additional indexing

Item Type:Journal Article, refereed, original work
Communities & Collections:07 Faculty of Science > Department of Chemistry
Dewey Decimal Classification:540 Chemistry
Date:December 2011
Deposited On:05 Mar 2012 10:18
Last Modified:13 May 2016 09:29
Publisher:American Institute of Physics
Additional Information:Copyright 2011 American Institute of Physics. This article may be downloaded for personal use only. Any other use requires prior permission of the author and the American Institute of Physics. The following article appeared in J. Chem. Phys. 135, 224510 (2011) and may be found at http://dx.doi.org/10.1063/1.3664746
Free access at:Publisher DOI. An embargo period may apply.
Publisher DOI:10.1063/1.3664746
Other Identification Number:ISI:000298250600034

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