- Formation of molecular hydrogen from protonated 9,10-dihydroanthracene: is the ejected H2 rotationally and vibrationally excited?
- International Journal of Mass Spectrometry
- Pages (from-to)
- Document type
- Faculty of Science (FNWI)
- Van 't Hoff Institute for Molecular Sciences (HIMS)
The infrared multiple-photon dissociation (IRMPD) spectrum of protonated 9,10-dihydroanthracene ([DHA+H]+, m/z 181) has been recorded using an infrared free electron laser. Protonation was accomplished by electrospray ionization with subsequent mass-selection and trapping in a Fourier transform ion cyclotron mass spectrometer. IR-induced fragment ions were observed at m/z 179, 166, and 165. Density functional calculations (B3LYP/6-311++G(d,p)) of the infrared spectra of the two possible protonated isomers of DHA showed that the observed IRMPD spectrum is best fit to a mixture of the two isomers. Potential energy surfaces for the loss of atomic and molecular hydrogen from the aliphatic carbons of [DHA+H]+ have been calculated. The lowest energy barriers are for loss of H2. After H2 ejection, stabilization of the remaining fragment occurs by hydrogen migration from one of the aliphatic carbons to the bare ejection site. In all cases the stabilized fragment is computed to be 9-hydroanthracene. The IRMPD spectrum of the m/z 179 fragment has been recorded and is shown to correspond closely both to the calculated and previously recorded IRMPD spectrum of ionic 9-hydroanthracene. The highly asymmetric transition state conformation of the to-be-formed H2 and the remaining fragment is highly suggestive of rotational, vibrational, and, possibly, translational excitation of the ejected H2. Evidence for such excitation from astronomical observations that show the close proximity of PAHs and H2 in certain interstellar objects and that show H2 rotational excitation, which has been difficult to explain via either collisional activation or UV pumping, is reviewed.
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