The paper describes an analysis of possible ways of deactivation of electronically excited states of 4-hydroxy- 3-methoxy-benzoic acid (vanillic acid) and its protolytic forms with the use of quantum-chemical methods INDO/S (intermediate neglect of differential overlap with a spectroscopic parameterization) and MEP (molecular electrostatic potential). The ratio of radiative and non-radiative deactivation channels of the electronic excitation energy is established. The rate constants of photophysical processes (internal and intercombination conversions) occurring after the absorption of light in these forms are evaluated.
Currently, the study of the photochemistry of natural phenols is relevant as it has a fundamental and a practical importance. The optical properties of natural phenols are studied: 3-methoxy-4-hydroxybenzaldehyde (vanillin) and 3- hydroxy-4-methoxybenzaldehyde (isovanillin), 4-hydroxy-3-methoxybenzoic acid (vanillic acid). The processes of proton transfer in the investigated molecules in ground and excited states under exposure to lamp and laser emissions are presented using the methods of electron spectroscopy and quantum chemistry.