A three orders of magnitude increase in nonlinear optical response by external electric field on Cryptand[2.2.2] (C222) based alkaline earthides


A new series of alkaline earthides based on Cryptand [2.2.2] (C222) containing nine complexes is designed by carefully placing alkali metals and alkaline earth metals inside and outside the C222 complexant, respectively i.e., M1(C222)M2 (M1 = Li, Na, K; M2 = Be, Mg, Ca). The designed complexes are reasonably stable both electronically and thermodynamically, as revealed through their vertical ionization potentials (VIPs) and interaction energies, respectively. Moreover, the true alkaline earthide nature of the complexes is confirmed through NBO and FMO analyses showing the negative charges and HOMOs over the alkaline earth metals, respectively. The further validity of true earthide characteristic is represented graphically by the spectra of partial density of states (PDOS). HOMO-LUMO gaps of the compounds are also very small (from 2.23 to 2.83 eV) when compared with pure cage’s (C222) H-L gap i.e., 5.63 eV. All these features award these complexes with very small values of transition energies (ΔE) ranging from 0.68 to 2.06 eV ultimately resulting in remarkably high hyperpolarizability values up to 2.7 × 105 au (for Na+(C222)Mg−). Furthermore, applying external electric field (EEF) on the complexes enhances hyperpolarizability further. A remarkable increase of 1000 folds has been seen when hyperpolarizability of K+(C222)Ca− is calculated after EEF application i.e., from 8.79 × 104 au to 2.48 × 107 au; when subjected to 0.001 au external electric field.