Ab initio study of AmCl(+): f-f spectroscopy and chemical binding

J Chem Phys. 2004 Sep 22;121(12):5661-75. doi: 10.1063/1.1665420.


A valence full configuration interaction study with a polarized double-zeta quality basis set has been carried out for the lowest 49 electronic states of AmCl(+). The calculations use a pseudopotential treatment for the core electrons and incorporate a one-electron spin-orbit interaction operator. Electrons in the valence s, p, d, and f subshells were included in the active space. The resulting electronic potential energy curves are largely repulsive. The chemical bonding is ionic in character with negligible participation of 5f electrons. The molecular f-f spectroscopy of AmCl(+) arises essentially from an in situ Am(2+) core with states slightly redshifted by the presence of chloride ion. Am(+)+Cl asymptotes which give rise to the few attractive potential energy curves can be predicted by analysis of the f-f spectroscopy of isolated Am(+) and Am(2+). The attractive curves have substantial binding energies, on the order of 75-80 kcal/mol, and are noticeably lower than recent indirect measurements on the isovalent EuCl(+). An independent empirical correlation supports the predicted reduction in AmCl(+) binding energy. The energies of the repulsive curves are strongly dependent on the selection of the underlying atomic orbitals while the energies of the attractive curves do not display this sensitivity. The calculations were carried out using our recently developed parallel spin-orbit configuration interaction software.