Multiconfigurational Quantum Chemistry Determinations of Absorption Cross Sections (sigma) in the Gas Phase and Molar Extinction Coefficients (epsilon) in Aqueous Solution and Air-Water Interface

Borrego-Sanchez, Ana; Zemmouche, Madjid; Carmona-Garcia, Javier; Frances-Monerris, Antonio; Mulet, Pep; Navizet, Isabelle; Roca-Sanjuan, Daniel

VL / 17 - BP / 3571 - EP / 3582
Theoretical determinations of absorption cross sections (sigma) in the gas phase and molar extinction coefficients (epsilon) in condensed phases (water solution, interfaces or surfaces, protein or nucleic acids embeddings, etc.) are of interest when rates of photochemical processes, J = integral phi(lambda) sigma(lambda) I(lambda) d lambda, are needed, where phi(lambda) and I(lambda) are the quantum yield of the process and the irradiance of the light source, respectively, as functions of the wavelength lambda. Efficient computational strategies based on single-reference quantum-chemistry methods have been developed enabling determinations of line shapes or, in some cases, achieving rovibrational resolution. Developments are however lacking for strongly correlated problems, with many excited states, high-order excitations, and/or near degeneracies between states of the same and different spin multiplicities. In this work, we define and compare the performance of distinct computational strategies using multiconfigurational quantum chemistry, nuclear sampling of the chromophore (by means of molecular dynamics, ab initio molecular dynamics, or Wigner sampling), and conformational and statistical sampling of the environment (by means of molecular dynamics). A new mathematical approach revisiting previous absolute orientation algorithms is also developed to improve alignments of geometries. These approaches are benchmarked through the n pi* band of acrolein not only in the gas phase and water solution but also in a gas-phase/water interface, a common situation for instance in atmospheric chemistry. Subsequently, the best strategy is used to compute the absorption band for the adduct formed upon addition of an OH radical to the C6 position of uracil and compared with the available experimental data. Overall, quantum Wigner sampling of the chromophore with molecular dynamics sampling of the environment with CASPT2 electronic-structure determinations arise as a powerful methodology to predict meaningful sigma(lambda) and epsilon(lambda) band line shapes with accurate absolute intensities.
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Hybrid, Green published