Even apparently simple, obtaining and analyzing observations on molecules and clusters and unambiguously assigning their structures is challenging. We report here the first ionization-loss Raman spectra compared to quantum chemical predictions for establishing the structural preferences of hydrates of the neurotransmitters hydroxy analogue, 2-phenylethyl alcohol (PEAL). The spectra encode two monohydrates and two previously unnoticed dihydrates, consequences of water insertion and sidewise attachment to the O-H group of gauche PEALs, in PEAL-H2O and PEAL-(H2O)2, or the higher-energy gauche-trans PEAL in the latter. The electronic structures retain the stable PEAL or flip its O-H to convert the gauche-trans PEAL conformer to the global minimum-energy dihydrate. We disclose conventional and bifurcated hydrogen bonds and electron steric repulsions by noncovalent interaction analysis and correlations between the experimental O-H stretching vibrational frequencies and the O-H and H···X bond lengths and electron densities, pointing to implications on hydrate forms and our approach virtue.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- General Chemistry
- Colloid and Surface Chemistry