Journal of Physical Chemistry B, Vol.124, No.34, 7391-7404, 2020
Two-Dimensional Infrared Spectroscopy of Aqueous Solutions of Metal Nitrates: Slowdown of Spectral Diffusion in the Presence of Divalent Cations
The hydrogen-bonded network of water can be affected both structurally and dynamically by the presence of ions. In the present study, we have considered three aqueous solutions of metal nitrates to investigate the effects of divalent cations (Mg2+ and Ca2+), compared to that of monovalent Na+ ions, on hydrogen-bond fluctuations and vibrational spectral diffusion through calculations of linear and two-dimensional infrared spectra of these solutions at room temperature. We have employed the methods of molecular dynamics simulations using effective polarizable models of ions combined with quantum mechanical calculations of transition variables and statistical mechanical calculations of spectral response functions of vibrational spectroscopy. Divalent cations are found to have much stronger and longer-ranged effects on the structure and dynamics of the hydrogen-bonded network than that induced by the monovalent sodium ions. The blue shifts in the calculated linear spectra are found to follow the Hofmeister trend for the cations. The 2D-IR spectral lineshape and intensity corresponding to three-pulse echo peak shift (3PEPS) experiments are calculated. The timescales of these nonlinear spectral responses and also frequency-time correlations show significant slowing down of spectral diffusion for solutions containing divalent Mg2+ and Ca2+ ions compared to the corresponding dynamics of the solution containing Na+ ions. Unlike NaNO3 solution, the relaxation of frequency and dipole orientational fluctuations of anion-bound water in Mg(NO3)(2) and Ca(NO3)(2) solutions are found to be somewhat slower than bulk water, which can be attributed to the presence of divalent cations whose effects go beyond their first solvation shells. This is also seen in the dynamics of bulk water in these solutions which is found to be notably slower for the solutions containing divalent cations than that in the NaNO3 solution. Unlike Mg2+ and Ca2+ ions, no specific cationic effect is observed for the Na+ ions.