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Photoinduced Excited State Electron Transfer at Liquid/Liquid Interfaces

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Several aspects of the photoinduced electron transfer (ET) reaction betweencoumarin 314 (C314) and N,N-dimethylaniline (DMA) at the water/DMA interface areinvestigated by molecular dynamics simulations. New DMA and water/DMA potentialenergy surfaces are developed and used to characterize the neat water/DMA interface.The adsorption free energy, the rotational dynamics and the solvation dynamics of C314at the liquid/liquid interface are investigated and are generally in reasonable agreementwith available experimental data. The solvent free energy curves for the ET reactionbetween excited C314 and DMA molecules are calculated and compared with thosecalculated for a simple point charge model of the solute. It is found that thereorganization free energy is very small when the full molecular description of the soluteis taken into account. An estimate of the ET rate constant is in reasonable agreement withexperiment. Our calculations suggest that the polarity of the surface “reported” by thesolute, as reflected by solvation dynamics and the reorganization free energy, is strongly solute-dependent.

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