A reinterpretation of the mechanism of the simplest reaction at an sp 3-hybridized carbon atom: H + CD4 → CD3 + HD

Jon P. Camden, Hans A. Bechtel, Davida J.Ankeny Brown, Marion R. Martin, Richard N. Zare, Wenfang Hu, György Lendvay, Diego Troya, George C. Schatz

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

54 Citations (Scopus)


A comparison between theory and experiment for the benchmark H + CD4 → HD + CD3 abstraction reaction yields a reinterpretation of the reaction mechanism and highlights the unexpected contribution of a stripping mechanism. Whereas the best analytic surface fails to reproduce experiment, a first-principles direct-dynamics (on the fly) treatment is in good agreement, showing that the H + CD4 reaction exhibits extreme sensitivity to modest differences in the potential energy surface. We find that bent H-D-C transition state geometries play an important role in the dynamics. A simple model that relates the scattering angle impact parameter and cone of acceptance accounts well for the overall reaction dynamics.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)11898-11899
Number of pages2
JournalJournal of the American Chemical Society
Issue number34
Publication statusPublished - Aug 31 2005

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Catalysis
  • Chemistry(all)
  • Biochemistry
  • Colloid and Surface Chemistry

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