Intramolecular Electron Delocalization: A Four-Site Model

Jan Linderberg, Mark A. Ratner*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

12 Scopus citations


The question of electron localization in isolated molecules and mixed-valence vs. averaged-valence structure is examined both from purely electronic and from vibronic viewpoints. Generally, a four-site model, in which two sites encompass a localization region in the molecule, is useful; the variation of the distance between the two sites in each region provides the vibronic coupling to localize the electrons. In a simple Hückel picture, we derive a closed-form perturbation-theoretic criterion for the stability of the localized (distorted) geometry; it is favored except for excessively polar structures. Adding the elastic energy of the framework increases the stability of the delocalized (averaged-valence or undistorted) geometry relative to the localized one. We present a diabatic coordinate curve-crossing analysis of the intramolecular electron-transfer problem, which permits straightforward classification of mixed-valent states and transfer processes. The vibronic picture leading to localization is quite similar to that employed in the pseudo-Jahn-Teller effect.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)3265-3271
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of the American Chemical Society
Issue number12
StatePublished - Jun 1981

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Catalysis
  • General Chemistry
  • Biochemistry
  • Colloid and Surface Chemistry


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