Coulomb Interactions between Dipolar Quantum Fluctuations in van der Waals Bound Molecules and Materials

24 Jul 2020  ·  Stöhr Martin, Sadhukhan Mainak, Al-Hamdani Yasmine S., Hermann Jan, Tkatchenko Alexandre ·

Mutual Coulomb interactions between electrons lead to a plethora of interesting physical and chemical effects, especially if those interactions involve many fluctuating electrons over large spatial scales. Here, we identify and study in detail the Coulomb interaction between dipolar quantum fluctuations in the context of van der Waals complexes and materials... Up to now, the interaction arising from the modification of the electron density due to quantum van der Waals interactions was considered to be vanishingly small. We demonstrate that in supramolecular systems and for molecules embedded in nanostructures, such contributions can amount to up to 6 kJ/mol and can even lead to qualitative changes in the long-range vdW interaction. Taking into account these broad implications, we advocate for the systematic assessment of so-called Coulomb singles in large molecular systems and discuss their relevance for explaining several recent puzzling experimental observations of collective behavior in nanostructured materials. read more

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Chemical Physics Materials Science