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Research Center for Complex Molecular Systems and Biomolecules
Center for Biomolecules and Complex Molecular Systems   
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Abstract of the article
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Molecular dynamics simulations of atmospheric oxidants at the air-water interface: Solvation and accommodation of OH and O3.

Vieceli, J.; Roeselova, M. ; Potter, N. etc., Journal of Physical Chemistry B, 109 [33] 15876 - 15892 (2005)

A comparative study of OH, O-3, and H2O equilibrium aqueous solvation and gas-phase accommodation on liquid water at 300 K is performed using a combination of ab initio calculations and molecular dynamics simulations. Polarizable force fields are developed for the interaction potential of OH and O-3 with water. The free energy profiles for transfer of OH and O-3 from the gas phase to the bulk liquid exhibit a pronounced minimum at the surface, but no barrier to solvation in the bulk liquid. The calculated surface excess of each oxidant is comparable to calculated and experimental values for short chain, aliphatic alcohols. Driving forces for the surface activity are discussed in terms of the radial distribution functions and dipole orientation distributions for each molecule in the bulk liquid and at the surface. Simulations of OH, O-3, and H2O impinging on liquid water with a thermal impact velocity are used to calculate thermal accommodation (S) and mass accommodation (a) coefficients. The values of S for OH, O-3, and H2O are 0.95, 0.90, and 0.99, respectively. The approaching molecules are accelerated toward the liquid surface when they are approximately 5 angstrom above it. The molecules that reach thermal equilibrium with the surface do so within 2 ps of striking the surface, while those that do not scatter into the gas phase with excess translational kinetic energy in the direction perpendicular to the surface. The time constants for absorption and desorption range from approximately 35 to 140 ps, and the values of alpha for OH, O-3, and H2O are 0.83, 0.047, and 0.99, respectively. The results are consistent with previous formulations of gas-phase accommodation from simulations, in which the process occurs by rapid thermal and structural equilibration followed by diffusion on the free energy profile. The implications of these results with respect to atmospheric chemistry are discussed.


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