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Wide-Range Light-Harvesting Donor–Acceptor Assemblies through Specific Intergelator Interactions via Self-Assembly

Authors

  • Dr. Suman K. Samanta,

    1. Department of Organic Chemistry, Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore 560012, Karnataka (India), Fax: (+91) 80-23600529
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  • Prof. Dr. Santanu Bhattacharya

    Corresponding author
    1. Department of Organic Chemistry, Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore 560012, Karnataka (India), Fax: (+91) 80-23600529
    2. Chemical Biology Unit, Jawaharlal Nehru Centre for Advanced Scientific Research, Bangalore 560064, Jakkur (India)
    • Department of Organic Chemistry, Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore 560012, Karnataka (India), Fax: (+91) 80-23600529
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Abstract

We have synthesized two new low-molecular-mass organogelators based on tri-p-phenylene vinylene derivatives, one of which could be designated as the donor whereas the other one is an acceptor. These were prepared specifically to show the intergelator interactions at the molecular level by using donor–acceptor self-assembly to achieve appropriate control over their macroscopic properties. Intermolecular hydrogen-bonding, π-stacking, and van der Waals interactions operate for both the individual components and the mixtures, leading to the formation of gels in the chosen organic solvents. Evidence for intergelator interactions was acquired from various spectroscopic, microscopic, thermal, and mechanical investigations. Due to the photochromic nature of these molecules, interesting photophysical properties, such as solvatochromism and J-type aggregation, were clearly observed. An efficient energy transfer was exhibited by the mixture of donor–acceptor assemblies. An array of four chromophores was built up by inclusion of two known dyes (anthracene and rhodamine 6G) for the energy-transfer studies. Interestingly, an energy-transfer cascade was observed in the assembly of four chromophores in a particular order (anthracene-donor-acceptor-rhodamine 6G), and if one of the components was removed from the assembly the energy transfer process was discontinued. This allowed the build up of a light-harvesting process with a wide range. Excitation at one end produces an emission at the other end of the assembly.

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