Infrared laser spectroscopy of the n-propyl and i-propyl radicals: Stretch-bend Fermi coupling in the alkyl CH stretch region Academic Article uri icon


  • The n-propyl and i-propyl radicals were generated in the gas phase via pyrolysis of n-butyl nitrite [CH3(CH2)3ONO] and i-butyl nitrite [(CH3)2CHCH2ONO], respectively. Nascent radicals were promptly solvated by a beam of He nanodroplets, and the infrared spectra of the radicals were recorded in the CH stretching region. Several previously unreported bands are observed between 2800 and 3150 cm-1. The CH stretching modes observed above 3000 cm-1 are in excellent agreement with CCSD(T) anharmonic frequencies computed using second-order vibrational perturbation theory. However, between 2800 and 3000 cm-1, the spectra of n- and i-propyl radicals become congested and difficult to assign due to the presence of multiple anharmonic resonance polyads. To model the spectrally congested region, Fermi and Darling-Dennison resonances are treated explicitly using "dressed" Hamiltonians and CCSD(T) quartic force fields in the normal mode representation, and the agreement with experiment is less than satisfactory. Computations employing local mode effective Hamiltonians reveal the origin of the spectral congestion to be strong coupling between the high frequency CH stretching modes and the lower frequency CHn bending/scissoring motions. The most significant coupling is between stretches and bends localized on the same CH2/CH3 group. Spectral simulations using the local mode approach are in excellent agreement with experiment.

author list (cited authors)

  • Franke, P. R., Tabor, D. P., Moradi, C. P., Douberly, G. E., Agarwal, J., Schaefer, H. F., & Sibert, E. L.

publication date

  • January 1, 2016 11:11 AM