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Experimental and Theoretical Photoemission Study of Indole and Its Derivatives in the Gas Phase

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journal contribution
posted on 11.05.2020 by Oksana Plekan, Hanan Sa’adeh, Alessandra Ciavardini, Carlo Callegari, Giuseppe Cautero, Carlo Dri, Michele Di Fraia, Kevin C. Prince, Robert Richter, Rudi Sergo, Luigi Stebel, Michele Devetta, Davide Faccialà, Caterina Vozzi, Lorenzo Avaldi, Paola Bolognesi, Mattea Carmen Castrovilli, Daniele Catone, Marcello Coreno, Fabio Zuccaro, Elisa Bernes, Giovanna Fronzoni, Daniele Toffoli, Aurora Ponzi
The valence and core-level photoelectron spectra of gaseous indole, 2,3-dihydro-7-azaindole, and 3-formylindole have been investigated using VUV and soft X-ray radiation supported by both an ab initio electron propagator and density functional theory calculations. Three methods were used to calculate the outer valence band photoemission spectra: outer valence Green function, partial third order, and renormalized partial third order. While all gave an acceptable description of the valence spectra, the last method yielded very accurate agreement, especially for indole and 3-formylindole. The carbon, nitrogen, and oxygen 1s core-level spectra of these heterocycles were measured and assigned. The double ionization appearance potential for indole has been determined to be 21.8 ± 0.2 eV by C 1s and N 1s Auger photoelectron spectroscopy. Theoretical analysis identifies the doubly ionized states as a band consisting of two overlapping singlet states and one triplet state with dominant configurations corresponding to holes in the two uppermost molecular orbitals. One of the singlet states and the triplet state can be described as consisting largely of a single configuration, but other doubly ionized states are heavily mixed by configuration interactions. This work provides full assignment of the relative binding energies of the core level features and an analysis of the electronic structure of substituted indoles in comparison with the parent indole.