UBC Faculty Research and Publications

Effects of the CO₂ Guest Molecule on the sI Clathrate Hydrate Structure Izquierdo-Ruiz, Fernando; Otero-de-la-Roza, Alberto; Contreras-García, Julia; Prieto-Ballesteros, Olga; Recio, Jose Manuel


This paper analyzes the structural, energetic and mechanical properties of carbon dioxide hydrate clathrates calculated using finite cluster and periodic ab initio density-functional theory methodologies. Intermolecular interactions are described by the exchange-hole dipole moment method. The stability, gas saturation energetics, guest–host interactions, cage deformations, vibrational frequencies, and equation of state parameters for the low-pressure sI cubic phase of the CO₂@H₂O clathrate hydrate are presented. Our results reveal that: (i) the gas saturation process energetically favors complete filling; (ii) carbon dioxide molecules prefer to occupy the larger of the two cages in the sI structure; (iii) blue shifts occur in both the symmetric and antisymmetric stretching frequencies of CO₂ upon encapsulation; and (iv) free rotation of guest molecules is restricted to a plane parallel to the hexagonal faces of the large cages. In addition, we calculate the librational frequency of the hindered rotation of the guest molecule in the plane perpendicular to the hexagonal faces. Our calculated spectroscopic data can be used as signatures for the detection of clathrate hydrates in planetary environments.

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