Environmental science & technology

Density functional theory study on aqueous aluminum-fluoride complexes: exploration of the intrinsic relationship between water-exchange rate constants and structural parameters for monomer aluminum complexes.

PMID 21133367


Density functional theory (DFT) calculation is carried out to investigate the structures, (19)F and (27)Al NMR chemical shifts of aqueous Al-F complexes and their water-exchange reactions. The following investigations are performed in this paper: (1) the microscopic properties of typical aqueous Al-F complexes are obtained at the level of B3LYP/6-311+G**. Al-OH(2) bond lengths increase with F(-) replacing inner-sphere H(2)O progressively, indicating labilizing effect of F(-) ligand. The Al-OH(2) distance trans to fluoride is longer than other Al-OH(2) distance, accounting for trans effect of F(-) ligand. (19)F and (27)Al NMR chemical shifts are calculated using GIAO method at the HF/6-311+G** level relative to F(H(2)O)(6)(-) and Al(H(2)O)(6)(3+) references, respectively. The results are consistent with available experimental values; (2) the dissociative (D) activated mechanism is observed by modeling water-exchange reaction for [Al(H(2)O)(6-i)F(i)]((3-i)+) (i = 1-4). The activation energy barriers are found to decrease with increasing F(-) substitution, which is in line with experimental rate constants (k(ex)). The log k(ex) of AlF(3)(H(2)O)(3)(0) and AlF(4)(H(2)O)(2)(-) are predicted by three ways. The results indicate that the correlation between log k(ex) and Al-O bond length as well as the given transmission coefficient allows experimental rate constants to be predicted, whereas the correlation between log k(ex) and activation free energy is poor; (3) the environmental significance of this work is elucidated by the extension toward three fields, that is, polyaluminum system, monomer Al-organic system and other metal ions system with high charge-to-radius ratio.