Triplet formation involving a polar transition state in a well-defined intramolecular perylenediimide dimeric aggregate

D. Veldman, S.M.A Chopin-Cado, S.C.J. Meskers, M.M. Groeneveld, R.M. Williams, R.A.J. Janssen

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A cofacially stacked perylenediimide (PDI) dimer with a xanthene linker was studied under a variety of conditions (solvent, temperature) and serves as a model for the molecular interactions occurring in solid films. Intrinsically, the PDI units have a fluorescence quantum yield (FF) close to unity, but FF is lowered by a factor of 6-50 at room temperature when two PDI moieties are held in a cofacial arrangement, while the decay time of the most emissive state is increased significantly (tF = 27 ns in toluene) compared to a monomeric PDI molecule (tF = 4 ns). Fluorescence measurements show a strong solvent and temperature dependence of the characteristics of the emissive excited state. In a glassy matrix of toluene (TOL) or 2-methyltetrahydrofuran (2-MeTHF), FF is high, and the decay time is long (tF = 50 ns). At higher temperature, both FF and tF are reduced. Interestingly, at room temperature, FF and tF are also reduced with increasing solvent polarity, revealing the presence of a polar transition state. Photoinduced absorption of the stacked molecules from the picosecond to the microsecond time scale shows that after photoexcitation reorganization occurs in the first nanoseconds, followed by intersystem crossing (ISC), producing the triplet excited state. Using singlet oxygen (1¿g) luminescence as a probe, a triplet quantum yield (FT) greater than 50% was obtained in air-saturated 2-Me-THF. Triplet formation is exceptional for PDI chromophores, and the enhanced ISC is explained by a decay involving a highly polar transition state.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)5846-5857
JournalJournal of Physical Chemistry A
Issue number26
Publication statusPublished - 2008


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