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Understanding of matrix embedding: a theoretical spectroscopic study of CO interacting with Ar clusters, surfaces and matrices

Mahjoubi, K.; Benoit, D. M.; Jaidane, N.-E.; Al-Mogren, M. Mogren; Hochlaf, M.


K. Mahjoubi

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Dr David Benoit
Senior Lecturer in Molecular Physics and Astrochemistry

N.-E. Jaidane

M. Mogren Al-Mogren

M. Hochlaf


Through benchmark studies, we explore the performance of PBE density functional theory, with and without Grimme's dispersion correction (DFT-D3), in predicting spectroscopic properties for molecules interacting with rare gas matrices. Here, a periodic-dispersion corrected model of matrix embedding is used for the first time. We use PBE-D3 to determine the equilibrium structures and harmonic vibrational frequencies of carbon monoxide in interaction with small Ar clusters (CO–Arn, n = 1, 2, 3), with an Ar surface and embedded in an Ar matrix. Our results show a converging trend for both the vibrational frequencies and binding energies when going from the gas-phase to a fully periodic approach describing CO embedding in Ar. This trend is explained in terms of solvation effects, as CO is expected to alter the structure of the Ar matrix. Due to a competition between CO–Ar interactions and Ar–Ar interactions, perturbations caused by the presence of CO are found to extend over several Å in the matrix. Accordingly, it is mandatory to fully relax rare gas matrices when studying their interaction with embedded molecules. Moreover, we show that the binding energy per Ar is almost constant (∼−130 cm−1 atom−1) regardless of the environment of the CO molecule. Finally, we show that the concentration of the solute into the cold matrix influences the spectroscopic parameters of molecules embedded into cold matrices. We suggest hence that several cautions should be taken before comparing these parameters to gas phase measurements and to theoretical data of isolated species.


Mahjoubi, K., Benoit, D. M., Jaidane, N., Al-Mogren, M. M., & Hochlaf, M. (2015). Understanding of matrix embedding: a theoretical spectroscopic study of CO interacting with Ar clusters, surfaces and matrices. Physical chemistry chemical physics : PCCP, 17(26), 17159-17168.

Journal Article Type Article
Acceptance Date May 21, 2015
Online Publication Date May 21, 2015
Publication Date May 21, 2015
Deposit Date Jun 4, 2015
Publicly Available Date Jun 4, 2015
Journal Physical chemistry chemical physics
Print ISSN 1463-9076
Electronic ISSN 1463-9084
Publisher Royal Society of Chemistry
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 17
Issue 26
Pages 17159-17168
Keywords Matrix embedding, Ar clusters
Public URL
Publisher URL!divAbstract
Additional Information : This document is Similarity Check deposited; : Supplementary Information; : The PCCP Owner Societies have an exclusive publication licence for this journal; : Single-blind; : Received 23 March 2015; Accepted 21 May 2015; Accepted Manuscript published 21 May 2015; Advance Article published 12 June 2015; Version of Record published 24 June 2015


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