Ionized water clusters (H2O)(n)(+), n=2 to 6: A high-accuracy study of structures and energetics


INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF QUANTUM CHEMISTRY, vol.120, no.7, 2020 (SCI-Expanded) identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 120 Issue: 7
  • Publication Date: 2020
  • Doi Number: 10.1002/qua.26100
  • Journal Indexes: Science Citation Index Expanded (SCI-EXPANDED), Scopus, Academic Search Premier, Chemical Abstracts Core, Chimica, Compendex, INSPEC, zbMATH
  • Hacettepe University Affiliated: Yes


Ionized water clusters, (H2O)(n)(+), have been of remarkable interest owing to their crucial roles in many chemical and biological processes. Small cationic water clusters (H2O)(n)(+), n = 2 to 6 serve as reasonable models for understanding the nature of the ionized water. In this study, employing high-level ab initio quantum chemical methods, such as the density-fitted orbital-optimized linearized coupled-cluster doubles (DF-OLCCD), coupled-cluster singles and doubles (CCSD), and coupled-cluster singles and doubles with perturbative triples [CCSD(T)], a high-accuracy study of structures and energetics for cationic water clusters [(H2O)(n)(+), n = 2-6] is presented. In this study, 2 dimer, 8 trimer, 18 tetramer, 23 pentamer, and 25 hexamer clusters are reported. Most of the structures considered are reported for the first time. Relative, binding, and vertical attachment energies (VAEs), for the first time, are presented at the complete basis set (CBS) limit, extrapolating energies of the aug-cc-pVTZ and aug-cc-pVQZ basis sets, to provide the most accurate energetics to date. Our results demonstrate that as cluster size increases, the VAE value decreases, which indicates that large-size clusters better compensate for the electron deficiency compared with small-size clusters. The VAE values for pentamer and hexamer clusters are 118.5 to 165.5 and 121.9 to 153.7 kcal mol(-1), respectively. Further, our binding energy results, at the CCSD(T)/CBS level, indicate strong bindings in cationic clusters due to hydrogen bond interactions. The average binding energy per water molecule varies from -16.6 to -21.8 kcal mol(-1) for the clusters considered. Hence, we present the most extensive and accurate study on ionized water clusters to date. Further, our results indicate that the DF-OLCCD method is very promising for ionic molecular clusters, and its accuracy approaches the CCSD(T) quality. The inexpensive analytic gradients of DF-OLCCD, compared with CCSD(T), make it very helpful for high-accuracy studies of molecular geometries.