The room temperature and cryogenic terahertz (THz) spectra (10-95 cm -1) of l-tartaric acid and dl-tartaric acid were investigated. At 293 K, the l-tartaric acid spectrum showed four absorption features at 36.4, 61.6, 78.7, and 87.3 cm -1 in the experimental spectrum. Once cooled to 78 K, these features narrowed and shifted to 35.9, 63.4, 81.1, and 90.1 cm -1. The THz spectrum of dl-tartaric acid is significantly different, containing only a single absorption at 79.9 cm -1 at room temperature, which shifts to 82.9 cm -1 at 78 K. Solid-state density functional theory calculations [B3LYP/6-311G(2d,2p)] were performed to simulate the crystalline structure of both molecular solids and to assign the observed spectral features to specific atomic motions. The THz spectrum of l-tartaric acid is particularly interesting in that it contains a theoretically unaccounted for spectral feature that may arise from second-order phonon processes and also exhibits an anomalous red-shifting absorption feature with cooling that is shown to originate from negative thermal expansion of the crystal.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Physical and Theoretical Chemistry