The 21Ag-11Bu energy gap in the polyenes: An extended configuration interaction study

Paul Tavan, Klaus Schulten

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


For a correct account of the ordering of excited states in the polyenes, in particular the low-lying 21Ag and 1 1B u states, single as well as double excited configurations must be included in a CI expansion. However, for longer π systems such expansion shows, in contrast to spectroscopic observations, a divergence of excitation energies and a reversal of the 2 1Ag and 1 1Bu state ordering. We have therefore extended the CI expansion to include all triple and quadruple excitations for the polyene series CnHn+2 n = 4,6,8,10,12 and n= 4,6,8,10, respectively. In our calculations we employed a PPP model Hamiltonian. The extended CI expansions correct the faults of previous treatments and predict: an increase of the 21Ag-11Bu, energy gap with increasing polyene length in agreement with recent spectroscopic observations. The effect of higher excitations is mainly due to triple excitations involving three simultaneous spin flips of ground state electrons.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)5407-5413
Number of pages7
JournalThe Journal of Chemical Physics
Issue number12
StatePublished - Jan 1 1979

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physics and Astronomy(all)
  • Physical and Theoretical Chemistry


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