Modern valence-bond description of aromatic annulene ions

P.B. Karadakov, D.L. Cooper

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Spin-coupled theory for 'N electrons in M orbitals' active spaces [SC(N, M)], an ab initio valence-bond (VB) approach which uses a compact and easy-to-interpret wave function comparable in quality to a 'N in M' complete-active-space self-consistent field [CASSCF(N, M)] construction, is used to obtain modern VB descriptions of the π-electron systems of the most important annulene rings with 4 n + 2 π electrons: the cyclopropenium ion, the cyclobutadiene dication and dianion, the cyclopentadienide anion, benzene, the cycloheptatrienyl cation, and the cyclooctatetraene dication and dianion in their highest-symmetry nuclear conformations. The SC wave functions for the cyclopropenium ion, cyclopentadienide anion, cycloheptatrienyl cation, cyclooctatetraene dication and dianion are shown to closely resemble the well-known SC model of the classical example of an aromatic system, benzene. The SC orbitals for the cyclobutadiene dication and dianion are more delocalized and demonstrate the ways in which SC wave functions adjust to electron-deficient and electron-rich environments. The high levels of resonance observed in all annulene ions with 4 n + 2 π electrons clearly demonstrate their aromaticity.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-8
Number of pages8
Issue number1
Early online date26 Nov 2013
Publication statusPublished - Jan 2014

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©2013 Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg.

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