Intramolecular photoinduced charge transfer in rotaxanes.

TitleIntramolecular photoinduced charge transfer in rotaxanes.
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2005
AuthorsKwan, PH, Swager, TM
JournalJournal of the American Chemical Society
Date Publishedapr

We report the synthesis and photophysical investigation of a series of rotaxanes in which the physical confinement of the donor and acceptor (DA) pair leads, in some cases, to emissive exciplexes. As a comparison, we examined the photoinduced charge-transfer processes in the same DA mixtures under intermolecular conditions. The interlocked configuration of the rotaxane facilitates pi orbital overlap of the excited state DA pair by keeping their center-to-center distance extremely small. This increased interaction between the DA pair significantly lowers the activation energy for exciplex formation (E(a)) and helps stabilize the highly polar charge-transfer complex. We find that the stabilizing effect of the rotaxane architecture compensates for the modest thermodynamic driving force for some charge-transfer interactions. In addition, we examined the temperature dependence on the rotaxanes' optical properties. Metal coordination to the tetrahedral cavity disrupts the cofacial conformation of the DA pair and quenches the fluorescence. Binding of alkali metal ions to the 3,4-ethylenedioxythiophene (EDOT)-based rotaxane, however, gives rise to the emergence of a new weak emission band at even lower energies, indicative of a new emissive exciplex.