Computing the arrows of chemical reactions

Pietro Vidossich, Agusti Lledós

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

8 Citations (Scopus)


© 2017, Springer International Publishing AG, part of Springer Nature. The use of curved arrows to describe the movement of electrons in chemical reaction schemes is widespread in several areas of chemistry, especially organic chemistry. The drawing of such arrows is guided by chemical intuition on the nature of nucleophiles and electrophiles. Here we show that it is actually possible to compute arrows from single-determinant computational quantum chemistry calculations. The procedure, which is outlined for the aldol reaction, is based on the computation of localized orbitals and their centroids along the intrinsic reaction coordinate.
Original languageEnglish
Article number17
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 1 Dec 2017


  • Computational chemistry
  • MO theory
  • Reaction mechanisms


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