Excited-state dynamics of donor-acceptor bridged systems containing a boron-dipyrromethene chromophore: interplay between charge separation and reorientational motion.


The excited-state dynamics of a series of electron donor-acceptor bridged systems (DABS) consisting of a boron-dipyrromethene chromophore covalently linked to a dinitro-substituted triptycene has been investigated using femtosecond time-resolved spectroscopy. The chromophores differ by the number of bromine atom substituents. The fluorescence lifetime of the DABS without any bromine atom is strongly reduced when going from toluene to polar solvents, this shortening being already present in chloroform. This effect is about 10 times weaker with a single bromine atom and negligible with two bromine atoms on the chromophore. The excited-state lifetime shortening is ascribed to a charge transfer from the excited chromophore to a nitrobenzene moiety, the driving force of this process depending on the number of bromine substituents. The occurrence of this process is further confirmed by the investigation of the excited-state dynamics of the chromophore alone in pure nitrobenzene. Surprisingly, no correlation between the charge separation time constant and the dielectric properties of the solvents could be observed. However, a good correlation between the charge separation time constant and the diffusional reorientation time of the chromophore alone, measured by fluorescence anisotropy, was found. Quantum chemistry calculations suggest that quasi-free rotation about the single bond linking the chromophore to the triptycene moiety permits a sufficient coupling of the donor and the acceptor to ensure efficient charge separation. The charge separation dynamics in these molecules is thus controlled by the reorientational motion of the donor relative to the acceptor.


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