Unified treatment of quantum coherent and incoherent hopping dynamics in electronic energy transfer: reduced hierarchy equation approach

Akihito Ishizaki, Graham R Fleming
Journal of Chemical Physics 2009 June 21, 130 (23): 234111
A new quantum dynamic equation for excitation energy transfer is developed which can describe quantum coherent wavelike motion and incoherent hopping in a unified manner. The developed equation reduces to the conventional Redfield theory and Forster theory in their respective limits of validity. In the regime of coherent wavelike motion, the equation predicts several times longer lifetime of electronic coherence between chromophores than does the conventional Redfield equation. Furthermore, we show quantum coherent motion can be observed even when reorganization energy is large in comparison to intersite electronic coupling (the Forster incoherent regime). In the region of small reorganization energy, slow fluctuation sustains longer-lived coherent oscillation, whereas the Markov approximation in the Redfield framework causes infinitely fast fluctuation and then collapses the quantum coherence. In the region of large reorganization energy, sluggish dissipation of reorganization energy increases the time electronic excitation stays above an energy barrier separating chromophores and thus prolongs delocalization over the chromophores.

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