Attraction of iodide ions by the free water surface, revealed by simulations with a polarizable force field based on drude oscillators
SourceJournal of Physical Chemistry B
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Recent theoretical and experimental studies have shown that polarizable anions, such as iodide and bromide, preferentially accumulate close to the surface of electrolyte solutions. This finding is in sharp contrast to the previously prevailing idea that salts are dielectrically excluded from the free water surface and opens up new avenues for research in specific salt effects. In this work, we have verified the ability of a recently introduced polarizable water model, SWM4-DP, to reproduce this behavior, by simulations of a NaI/water slab, corresponding to a 1.2 M solution. The water and ion polarizabilities are modeled by classical Drude oscillator particles. As revealed by the simulations, a double layer is formed close to the free water surface, with the iodide ions located closer to the interface and the sodium ions at a neighboring, interior layer. Near the surface, all solution species acquire an induced dipole moment, that is perpendicular to the surface and points toward the exterior. The double charge layer causes ordering of water at a subsurface region. Simulations with a simpler system of a single iodide ion in a water slab show that the surface position is stabilized by induced charge interactionsin contrast, the charge-dipole interactions between the iodide permanent charge and the water permanent dipole moment favor the bulk position. Thus, the polarizabilities of ion and water are essential for explaining the increased preference of iodide for the air-water interface, in accordance with other studies. © 2005 American Chemical Society.