Modeling the near-field effect on molecular excited states using the discrete interaction model/quantum mechanical method

Hepeng Ye, Jeffrey C. Becca, Lasse Jensen

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Strong light-matter interactions significantly modify the optical properties of molecules in the vicinity of plasmonic metal nanoparticles. Since the dimension of the plasmonic cavity approaches that of the molecules, it is critical to explicitly describe the nanoparticle junctions. In this work, we use the discrete interaction model/quantum mechanical (DIM/QM) method to model the coupling between the plasmonic near-field and molecular excited states. DIM/QM is a combined electrodynamics/quantum mechanical model that uses an atomistic description of the nanoparticle. We extend the DIM/QM method to include the local field effects in the sum-over-state formalism of time-dependent density functional theory. As a test of the method, we study the interactions between small organic chromophores and metal nanoparticles. In particular, we examine how the inclusion of multiple electronic transitions and intermolecular interactions modify the coupling between molecules and nanoparticles. Using the sum-over-state formalism of DIM/QM, we show that two-state models break down when the plasmon excitation is detuned from the molecular excitations. To gain further insight, we compare the simple coupled-dipole model (CDM) with the DIM/QM model. We find that CDM works well for simple systems but fails when going beyond the single molecule or single nanoparticle cases. We also find that the coupling depends strongly on the site of the nanoparticle in which the chromophore couples to. Our work suggests the importance of explicitly describing the cavity to capture the atomistic level local field environment in which the molecule strongly couples to.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number014707
JournalJournal of Chemical Physics
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 7 2024

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • General Physics and Astronomy
  • Physical and Theoretical Chemistry

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