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Ab initio investigation of Br-3d core-excited states in HBr and HBr+ toward XUV probing of photochemical dynamics.

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Ultrafast X-ray/XUV transient absorption spectroscopy is a powerful tool for real-time probing of chemical dynamics. Interpretation of the transient absorption spectra requires knowledge of core-excited potentials, which necessitates assistance from high-level electronic-structure computations. In this study, we investigate Br-3d core-excited electronic structures of hydrogen bromide (HBr) using spin-orbit general multiconfigurational quasidegenerate perturbation theory (SO-GMC-QDPT). Potential energy curves and transition dipole moments are calculated from the Franck-Condon region to the asymptotic limit and used to construct core-to-valence absorption strengths for five electronic states of HBr ( Σ 1 0 + ,   3 Π 1 ,   1 Π 1 ,   3 Π 0 + ,   3 Σ 1 ) and two electronic states of HBr+ (2Π3∕2, 2Σ1∕2). The results illustrate the capabilities of Br-3d edge probing to capture transitions of the electronic-state symmetry as well as nonadiabatic dissociation processes that evolve across avoided crossings. Furthermore, core-to-valence absorption spectra are simulated from the neutral Σ 1 0 + state and the ionic Π 2 1 / 2 , 3 / 2 states by numerically solving the time-dependent Schrödinger equation and exhibit excellent agreement with the experimental spectrum. The comprehensive and quantitative picture of the core-excited states obtained in this work allows for transparent analysis of the core-to-valence absorption signals, filling gaps in the theoretical understanding of the Br-3d transient absorption spectra.

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