Frequency Dependence of Electron Spin–lattice Relaxation for Semiquinones in Alcohol Solutions

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College of Natual Science and Mathematics, Chemistry and Biochemistry


Benzosemiquinone, Deuterated alcohol, Hydrogen bonding, Local mode, Spin rotation


The spin–lattice relaxation rates at 293 K for three anionic semiquinones (2,5-di-t-butyl-1,4-benzosemiquinone, 2,6-di-t-butyl-1,4-benzosemiquinone, and 2,3,5,6-tetramethoxy-1,4-benzosemiquinone) were studied at up to 8 frequencies between 250 MHz and 34 GHz in ethanol or methanol solution containing high concentrations of OH−. The relaxation rates are about a factor of 2 faster at lower frequencies than at 9 or 34 GHz. However, in perdeuterated alcohols the relaxation rates exhibit little frequency dependence, which demonstrates that the dominant frequency-dependent contribution to relaxation is modulation of dipolar interactions with solvent nuclei. The relaxation rates were modeled as the sum of two frequency-independent contributions (spin rotation and a local mode) and two frequency-dependent contributions (modulation of dipolar interaction with solvent nuclei and a much smaller contribution from modulation of g anisotropy). The correlation time for modulation of the interaction with solvent nuclei is longer than the tumbling correlation time of the semiquinone and is consistent with hydrogen bonding of the alcohol to the oxygen atoms of the semiquinones.

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