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Photochemical Ring-Opening Reaction of 1,3-Cyclohexadiene: Identifying the True Reactive State

Travnikova, Oksana; Piteša, Tomislav; Ponzi, Aurora; Sapunar, Marin; Squibb, Richard James; Richter, Robert; Finetti, Paola; Di Fraia, Michele; De Fanis, Alberto; Mahne, Nicola; Manfredda, Michele; Zhaunerchyk, Vitali; Marchenko, Tatiana; Guillemin, Renaud; Journel, Loic; Prince, Kevin Charles; Callegari, Carlo; Simon, Marc; Feifel, Raimund; Decleva, Piero; Došlić, Nađa; Piancastelli, Maria Novella (2022) Photochemical Ring-Opening Reaction of 1,3-Cyclohexadiene: Identifying the True Reactive State. Journal of the American Chemical Society, 144 (48). pp. 21878-21886. ISSN 0002-7863

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The photochemically induced ring-opening isomerization reaction of 1,3-cyclohexadiene to 1,3,5-hexatriene is a textbook example of a pericyclic reaction and has been amply investigated with advanced spectroscopic techniques. The main open question has been the identification of the single reactive state which drives the process. The generally accepted description of the isomerization pathway starts with a valence excitation to the lowest lying bright state, followed by a passage through a conical intersection to the lowest lying doubly excited state, and finally a branching between either the return to the ground state of the cyclic molecule or the actual ring-opening reaction leading to the open-chain isomer. Here, in a joint experimental and computational effort, we demonstrate that the evolution of the excitation–deexcitation process is much more complex than that usually described. In particular, we show that an initially high-lying electronic state smoothly decreasing in energy along the reaction path plays a key role in the ring-opening reaction.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: resolved photoelectron-spectroscopy ; abinitio molecular-dynamics ; electronic-spectra ; quantum dynamics : rydberg states ; photodissociation
Subjects: NATURAL SCIENCES > Physics
Divisions: Division of Physical Chemistry
Depositing User: Nađa Došlić
Date Deposited: 19 Jan 2023 11:30
DOI: 10.1021/jacs.2c06296

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