A perturbative approximation of the state specific polarizable continuum model (PCM) symmetry-adapted cluster-configuration interaction (SAC-CI) method is proposed for efficient calculations of the electronic excitations and absorption spectra of molecules in solutions. This first-order PCM SAC-CI method considers the solvent effects on the energies of excited states up to the first-order with using the zeroth-order wavefunctions. This method can avoid the costly iterative procedure of the self-consistent reaction field calculations. The first-order PCM SAC-CI calculations well reproduce the results obtained by the iterative method for various types of excitations of molecules in polar and nonpolar solvents. The first-order contribution is significant for the excitation energies. The results obtained by the zeroth-order PCM SAC-CI, which considers the fixed ground-state reaction field for the excited-state calculations, are deviated from the results by the iterative method about 0.1 eV, and the zeroth-order PCM SAC-CI cannot predict even the direction of solvent shifts in n-hexane for many cases. The first-order PCM SAC-CI is applied to studying the solvatochromisms of (2,2'-bipyridine)tetracarbonyltungsten [W(CO)(4)(bpy), bpy = 2,2'-bipyridine] and bis(pentacarbonyltungsten)pyrazine [(OC)(5)W(pyz)W(CO)(5), pyz = pyrazine]. The SAC-CI calculations reveal the detailed character of the excited states and the mechanisms of solvent shifts. The energies of metal to ligand charge transfer states are significantly sensitive to solvents. The first-order PCM SAC-CI well reproduces the observed absorption spectra of the tungsten carbonyl complexes in several solvents. (C) 2014 AIP Publishing LLC.
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