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  • Baryshnikov, G. V.; Valiev, R. R.; Cherepanov, V. N.; Karaush-Karmazin, N. N.; Minaeva, V. A.; Minaev, B. F.; Ågren, H. (2019)
    The electronic structure, absorption and emission spectra, aromaticity and photophysical behavior of the recently synthesized tetrasilatetrathia[8]circulene and tetragermatetrathia[8]circulene compounds have been studied computationally. Both compounds demonstrate a specific bifacial aromaticity, which is unusual for hetero[8]circulenes; the inner eight-membered core sustains an expected strong paratropic magnetically-induced ring current, while the outer perimeter contains saturated Si(Et)2 and Ge(Et)2 moieties which break the conjugation between the thiophene rings. The overall magnetically-induced ring current for both studied circulenes is close to zero because of the strong local diatropic currents in each thiophene ring that compensate the paratropic counterpart. The electronic absorption and emission spectra of tetrasilatetrathia[8]circulene and tetragermatetrathia[8]circulene demonstrate a clear visible vibronic progression. The 0–0 band is the most active one in the absorption spectra, while in the fluorescence spectra the 0–1 band composed of several normal vibrations is more intense compared with the 0–0 band in excellent agreement with experiment. Accounting for spin–orbit coupling effects, an analysis of the photophysical constants for the two compounds demonstrates: (1) a clear manifestation of the internal heavy atom effect on the inter-system crossing efficiency; (2) one to two order domination of non-radiative rates over the fluorescence rate; and (3) that the S1–S0 internal conversion is extremely slow and can not compete with the fluorescence, while the S1–Tn inter-system crossing is a main deactivation channel of the S1 excited state. These results provide new insight into the electronic structure and photophysics of tetrasilatetrathia[8]circulene and tetragermatetrathia[8]circulene as novel standalone representatives of hetero[8]circulenes – tetraannelated derivatives of tetrathienylene.
  • Baryshnikov, Glib; Valiev, Rashid R.; Nasibullin, Rinat T.; Sundholm, Dage; Kurten, Theo; Ågren, Hans (2020)
    The recently synthesized cyclo[18]carbon molecule has been characterized in a number of studies by calculating electronic, spectroscopic, and mechanical properties. However, cyclo[18] carbon is only one member of the class of cyclo[n]carbons-standalone carbon allotrope representatives. Many of the larger members of this class of molecules have not been thoroughly investigated. In this work, we calculate the magnetically induced current density of cyclo[n]carbons in order to elucidate how electron delocalization and aromatic properties change with the size of the molecular ring (n), where n is an even number between 6 and 100. We find that the Hiickel rules for aromaticity (4k + 2) and antiaromaticity (4k) become degenerate for large C-n rings (n > 50), which can be understood as a transition from a delocalized electronic structure to a nonaromatic structure with localized current density fluxes in the triple bonds. Actually, the calculations suggest that cyclo[n]carbons with n > 50 are nonaromatic cyclic polyalkynes. The influence of the amount of nonlocal exchange and the asymptotic behavior of the exchange-correlation potential of the employed density functionals on the strength of the magnetically induced ring current and the aromatic character of the large cyclo[n]carbons is also discussed.
  • Lehtola, Susi (2019)
    Electronic structure calculations, such as in the Hartree-Fock or Kohn-Sham density functional approach, require an initial guess for the molecular orbitals. The quality of the initial guess has a significant impact on the speed of convergence of the self-consistent field (SCF) procedure. Popular choices for the initial guess include the one-electron guess from the core Hamiltonian, the extended Huckel method, and the superposition of atomic densities (SAD). Here, we discuss alternative guesses obtained from the superposition of atomic potentials (SAP), which is easily implementable even in real-space calculations. We also discuss a variant of SAD which produces guess orbitals by purification of the density matrix that could also be used in real-space calculations, as well as a parameter-free variant of the extended Huckel method, which resembles the SAP method and is easy to implement on top of existing SAD infrastructure. The performance of the core Hamiltonian, the SAD, and the SAP guesses as well as the extended Huckel variant is assessed in nonrelativistic calculations on a data set of 259 molecules ranging from the first to the fourth periods by projecting the guess orbitals onto precomputed, converged SCF solutions in single- to triple-zeta basis sets. It is shown that the proposed SAP guess is the best guess on average. The extended Huckel guess offers a good alternative, with less scatter in accuracy.
  • Rong, Mark K.; Holtrop, Flip; Bobylev, Eduard O.; Nieger, Martin; Ehlers, Andreas W.; Slootweg, J. Chris; Lammertsma, Koop (2021)
    Novel seven-membered cyclic imine-based 1,3-P,N ligands were obtained by capturing a Beckmann nitrilium ion intermediate generated in situ from cyclohexanone with benzotriazole, and then displacing it by a secondary phosphane under triflic acid promotion. These "cycloiminophosphanes" possess flexible non-isomerizable tetrahydroazepine rings with a high basicity; this sets them apart from previously reported iminophophanes. The donor strength of the ligands was investigated by using their P-kappa(1)- and P,N-kappa(2)-tungsten(0) carbonyl complexes, by determining the IR frequency of the trans-CO ligands. Complexes with [RhCp*Cl-2](2) demonstrated the hemilability of the ligands, giving a dynamic equilibrium of kappa(1) and kappa(2) species; treatment with AgOTf gives full conversion to the kappa(2) complex. The potential for catalysis was shown in the Ru-II-catalyzed, solvent-free hydration of benzonitrile and the Ru-II- and Ir-I-catalyzed transfer hydrogenation of cyclohexanone in isopropanol. Finally, to enable access to asymmetric catalysts, chiral cycloiminophosphanes were prepared from l-menthone, as well as their P,N-kappa(2)-Rh-III and a P-kappa(1)-Ru-II complexes.
  • Boom, Devin H. A.; de Boed, Ewoud J. J.; Nicolas, Emmanuel; Nieger, Martin; Ehlers, Andreas W.; Jupp, Andrew R.; Slootweg, J. Chris (2020)
    The reaction of the intramolecular frustrated Lewis pair (FLP) tBu2PCH2BPh2 with the amine-boranes NH3·BH3 and Me2NH·BH3 leads to the formation of the corresponding FLP-H2 adducts as well as novel five-membered heterocycles that result from capturing the in situ formed amino-borane by a second equivalent of FLP. The sterically more demanding tBu2PCH2BMes2 does not form such a five-membered heterocycle when reacted with Me2NH·BH3 and its H2 adduct liberates dihydrogen at elevated temperatures, promoting the metal-free catalytic dehydrogenation of amine-boranes.
  • Myllys, Nanna; Ponkkonen, Tuomo; Passananti, Monica; Elm, Jonas; Vehkamäki, Hanna; Olenius, Tinja (2018)
    The role of a strong organobase, guanidine, in sulfuric acid-driven new-particle formation is studied using state-of-the-art quantum chemical methods and molecular cluster formation simulations. Cluster formation mechanisms at the molecular level are resolved, and theoretical results on cluster stability are confirmed with mass spectrometer measurements. New-particle formation from guanidine and sulfuric acid molecules occurs without thermodynamic barriers under studied conditions, and clusters are growing close to a 1:1 composition of acid and base. Evaporation rates of the most stable clusters are extremely low, which can be explained by the proton transfers and symmetrical cluster structures. We compare the ability of guanidine and dimethylamine to enhance sulfuric acid-driven particle formation and show that more than 2000-fold concentration of dimethylamine is needed to yield as efficient particle formation as in the case of guanidine. At similar conditions, guanidine yields 8 orders of magnitude higher particle formation rates compared to dimethylamine. Highly basic compounds such as guanidine may explain experimentally observed particle formation events at low precursor vapor concentrations, whereas less basic and more abundant bases such as ammonia and amines are likely to explain measurements at high concentrations.
  • Rong, Mark K.; van Duin, Koen; van Dijk, Tom; de Pater, Jeroen J. M.; Deelman, Berth-Jan; Nieger, Martin; Ehlers, A. W.; Slootweg, J. Chris; Lammertsma, Koop (2017)
    Highly stable iminophosphanes, obtained from alkylating nitriles and reaction of the resulting nitrilium ions with secondary phosphanes, were explored as tunable P-monodentate and 1,3-P,N bidentate ligands in rhodium complexes. X-ray crystal structures are reported for both k1 and k2 complexes with the counterion in one of them being an unusual anionic coordination polymer of silver triflate. The iminophosphane-based ruthenium(II)-catalyzed hydration of benzonitrile in 1,2-dimethoxyethane (180 degrees C, 3 h) and water (100 degrees C, 24 h) and under solvent free conditions (180 degrees C, 3 h) results in all cases in the selective formation of benzamide with yields of up to 96%, thereby outperforming by far the reactions in which the common 2-pyridyldiphenylphosphane is used as the 1,3-P,N ligand.
  • Garcia-Perez, Guillermo; Rossi, Matteo A. C.; Sokolov, Boris; Tacchino, Francesco; Barkoutsos, Panagiotis Kl; Mazzola, Guglielmo; Tavernelli, Ivano; Maniscalco, Sabrina (2021)
    Many prominent quantum computing algorithms with applications in fields such as chemistry and materials science require a large number of measurements, which represents an important roadblock for future real-world use cases. We introduce a novel approach to tackle this problem through an adaptive measurement scheme. We present an algorithm that optimizes informationally complete positive operator-valued measurements (POVMs) on the fly in order to minimize the statistical fluctuations in the estimation of relevant cost functions. We show its advantage by improving the efficiency of the variational quantum eigensolver in calculating ground-state energies of molecular Hamiltonians with extensive numerical simulations. Our results indicate that the proposed method is competitive with state-of-the-art measurement-reduction approaches in terms of efficiency. In addition, the informational completeness of the approach offers a crucial advantage, as the measurement data can be reused to infer other quantities of interest. We demonstrate the feasibility of this prospect by reusing ground-state energy-estimation data to perform high-fidelity reduced state tomography.
  • Iyer, Siddharth; Rissanen, Matti P.; Kurtén, Theo (2019)
    Peroxy (RO2) and alkoxy (RO) radicals are prototypical intermediates in any hydrocarbon oxidation. In this work, we use computational methods to (1) study the mechanism and kinetics of the RO2 + OH reaction for previously unexplored “R” structures (R = CH(O)CH2 and R = CH3C(O)) and (2) investigate a hitherto unaccounted channel of molecular growth, R′O2 + RO. On the singlet surface, these reactions rapidly form ROOOH and R′OOOR adducts, respectively. The former decomposes to RO + HO2 and R(O)OH + O2 products, while the main decomposition channel for the latter is back to the reactant radicals. Decomposition rates of R′OOOR adducts varied between 103 and 0.015 s–1 at 298 K and 1 atm. The most long-lived R′OOOR adducts likely account for some fraction of the elemental compositions detected in the atmosphere that are commonly assigned to stable covalently bound dimers.
  • Krachko, Tetiana; Nicolas, Emmanuel; Ehlers, Andreas W.; Nieger, Martin; Slootweg, J. Chris (2018)
    Treatment of the preorganized frustrated Lewis pairs (FLPs) tBu(2)PCH(2)BPh(2) (1) and o-Ph2P(C6H4)BCat (Cat=catechol) (4) with 2-methyloxirane, 2-phenyloxirane and 2-(trifluoromethyl)oxirane resulted in epoxide ring-opening to yield the six- and seven-membered heterocycles 2a-c and 5a-c, respectively. These zwitterionic products were characterized spectroscopically, and compounds 2a, 2b, 5a and 5c were structurally characterized by single-crystal X-ray structure analyses. Based on computational and kinetic studies, the mechanism of these reactions was found to proceed via activation of the epoxide by the Lewis acidic borane moiety followed by nucleophilic attack of the phosphine of a second FLP molecule. The resulting chain-like intermediates afford the final cyclic products by ring-closure and concurrent release of the second equivalent of FLP that behaves as catalyst in this reaction.
  • Moller, Kristian H.; Kurten, Theo; Bates, Kelvin H.; Thornton, Joel A.; Kjaergaard, Henrik G. (2019)
    Epoxide formation was established a decade ago as a possible reaction pathway for beta-hydroperoxy alkyl radicals in the atmosphere. This epoxide-forming pathway required excess energy to compete with O-2 addition, as the thermal reaction rate coefficient is many orders of magnitude too slow. However, recently, a thermal epoxide forming reaction was discovered in the ISOPOOH + OH oxidation pathway. Here, we computationally investigate the effect of substituents on the epoxide formation rate coefficient of a series of substituted beta-hydroperoxy alkyl radicals. We find that the thermal reaction is likely to be competitive with O-2 addition when the alkyl radical carbon has a OH group, which is able to form a hydrogen bond to a substituent on the other carbon atom in the epoxide ring being formed. Reactants fulfilling these requirements can be formed in the OH-initiated oxidation of many biogenic hydrocarbons. Further, we find that beta-OOR alkyl radicals react similarly to beta-OOH alkyl radicals, making epoxide formation a possible decomposition pathway in the oxidation of ROOR peroxides. GEOS-Chem modeling shows that the total annual production of isoprene dihydroxy hydroperoxy epoxide is 23 Tg, making it by far the most abundant C-5-tetrafunctional species from isoprene oxidation.