Heterogeneous Clusters of Phthalocyanine and Water Prepared and Probed in Superfluid Helium Nanodroplets

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  • J. Fischer, University of Regensburg
  • ,
  • F. Schlaghaufer, University of Regensburg
  • ,
  • E. M. Lottner, University of Regensburg
  • ,
  • A. Slenczka, University of Regensburg
  • ,
  • L. Christiansen
  • ,
  • H. Stapelfeldt
  • M. Karra, Fritz Haber Institute of the Max Planck Society
  • ,
  • B. Friedrich, Fritz Haber Institute of the Max Planck Society
  • ,
  • Th Mullan, Humboldt University of Berlin
  • ,
  • M. Schütz, Humboldt University of Berlin
  • ,
  • D. Usvyat, Humboldt University of Berlin

Superfluid helium nanodroplets comprised of thousands to millions of helium atoms can serve as a reactor for the synthesis of heterogeneous molecular clusters at cryogenic conditions. The cluster synthesis occurs via consecutive pick-up of the cluster building blocks by the helium droplet and their subsequent coalescence within the droplet. The effective collision cross section of the building blocks is determined by the helium droplet size and thus exceeds by orders of magnitude that of a reactive collision in the gas phase. Moreover, the cryogenic helium environment (at 0.38 K) as a host promotes the formation of metastable cluster configurations. The question arises as to the extent of the actual involvement of the helium environment in the cluster formation. The present study deals with clusters of single phthalocyanine (Pc) molecules with single water molecules. A large fluorophore such as Pc offers several sites where the water molecule can attach. The resulting isomeric variants of the Pc-H2O complex can be selectively identified by electronic spectroscopy. We compare the experimental electronic spectra of the Pc-H2O complex generated in superfluid helium nanodroplets with the results of quantum-chemical calculations on the same cluster but under gas-phase conditions. The number of isomeric variants observed in the helium droplet experiment comes out the same as that obtained from our gas-phase calculations.

Original languageEnglish
JournalJournal of Physical Chemistry A
Pages (from-to)10057-10064
Number of pages8
Publication statusPublished - Nov 2019

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