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Chemphyschem. 2005 Jun 13;6(6):1146-56.

Energy transfer in single hydrogen-bonded water molecules.

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  • 1FOM Institute for Atomic and Molecular Physics, Kruislaan 407, 1098 SJ Amsterdam, The Netherlands.


We study the structure and dynamics of hydrogen-bonded complexes of H2O/HDO and acetone dissolved in carbon tetrachloride by probing the response of the O-H stretching vibrations with linear mid-infrared spectroscopy and femtosecond mid-infrared pump-probe spectroscopy. We find that the hydrogen bonds in these complexes break and reform with a characteristic time scale of approximately 1 ps. These hydrogen-bond dynamics are observed to play an important role in the equilibration of vibrational energy over the two O-H groups of the H2O molecule. For both H2O and HDO, the O-H stretching vibrational excitation relaxes with a time constant of 6.3+/-0.3 ps, and the molecular reorientation has a time constant of 6+/-1 ps.

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