Potential Energy Curves for Formation of the CH2O2 Criegee Intermediate on the 3CH2 + 3O2 Singlet and Triplet Potential Energy Surfaces

Sandhiya Lakshmanan, Rene F.K. Spada, Francisco B.C. Machado, William L. Hase

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The potential energy curves (PECs) for the interaction of 3CH2 with 3O2 in singlet and triplet potential energy surfaces (PESs) leading to singlet and triplet Criegee intermediates (CH2OO) are studied using electronic structure calculations. The bonding mechanism is interpreted by analyzing the ground state multireference configuration interaction (MRCI) wave function of the reacting species and at all points along the PES. The interaction of 3CH2 with 3O2 on the singlet surface leads to a flat long-range attractive PEC lacking any maxima or minima along the curve. The triplet surface stems into a maximum along the curve resulting in a transition state with an energy barrier of 5.3 kcal/mol at CASSCF(4,4)/cc-pVTZ level. The resulting 3CH2OO is less stable than the 1CH2OO. In this study, the biradical character (β) is used as a measure to understand the difference in the topology of the singlet and triplet PECs and the relation of the biradical nature of the species with their structures. The 3CH2OO has a larger biradical character than 1CH2OO, and because of the larger bond order of 1CH2OO, the C-O covalent bond becomes harder to break, thereby stabilizing 1CH2OO. Thus, this study provides insights into the shape of the PEC obtained from the reaction between 3CH2 and 3O2 in terms of their bonding nature and from the shape of the curves, the temperature dependence or independence of the rate of the reaction is discussed.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)8968-8975
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Physical Chemistry A
Issue number41
StatePublished - Oct 17 2019


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