Analysis of diatomic bond dissociation and formation in terms of the reaction force and the position-dependent reaction force constant
Bond dissociation and formation in diatomic molecules are analyzed in terms of the reaction force F(R) and the reaction force constant κ(R). These were determined for a group of 13 molecules from their extended-Rydberg potential energy functions V(R), which are of near-experimental quality. From F(R) and κ(R) comes a two-stage description of dissociation/formation. In dissociation, the first stage involves stretching of the bond, which is opposed by an increasingly negative retarding force F(R). This reaches a minimum and then begins to weaken in the second stage, which is the transition from stretched molecule to free atoms. Bond formation begins with the reverse transition, driven by a positive F(R) which reaches a maximum for the stretched molecule and then becomes a decreasing restoring force. In the stages in which the system is a stretched molecule, κ(R) is positive with its maximum at the equilibrium bond length; it is zero at the minimum or maximum of F(R), and negative throughout the transition stages, going through a minimum. κ(R) <0 has been found to characterize the transition portion of a reaction. This description of dissociation/formation is reinforced by computed B3LYP and Hartree-Fock force constants at different atom separations for the singlet molecules. Hartree-Fock wave function stability assessments suggest that, for the single-bonded singlet molecules, the onset of electron unpairing in dissociation comes in the neighborhood of the F(R) minimum.
KeywordsDiatomic molecule dissociation/formation Extended-Rydberg potential energy function Position-dependent reaction force constant Reaction force Wave function stability
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