Geometries and stabilities of various configurations of benzene dimer: details of novel V-shaped structure revealed
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Benzene dimer configurations namely T-shaped, parallel-displaced, sandwich, and V-shaped that were proposed by experimental studies are investigated using second- and fourth-order Møller–Plesset perturbation theory. The MP2 method with aug-cc-pVDZ and aug-cc-pVTZ basis sets unequivocally shows that the parallel-displaced configuration is considerably more stable than T-shaped structure. On the other hand, the MP4(SDTQ)/aug-cc-pVDZ level predicts that the T-shaped and parallel-displaced configurations are nearly isoenergetic, which is parallel to the previous results of estimated CCSD(T)/CBS level reported recently. The lowest energy T-shaped configuration is stabilized by 0.17 kcal/mol over the parallel-displaced configuration at the MP4(SDTQ)/aug-cc-pVDZ level. Although the structures of all the four different types of configurations are found to be stable at both MP2 and full MP4 methods, the V-shaped configuration is the least stable among them. The calculated interaction energy of −2.3 kcal/mol for the lowest energy T-shaped structure at the MP4(SDTQ)/aug-cc-pVDZ level is in good agreement with the experimental value of −2.4 ± 0.4 kcal/mol. We conclude that the MP4(SDTQ) with a reasonably good basis set can be used for systems involving π–π interactions to obtain qualitative and quantitative results.