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A Facile Approach to Highly Efficient and Thermally Stable Solid-State Emitters: Knitting up AIE-Active TPE Luminogens by Aryl Linkers

Authors

  • Carrie Yin Kwan Chan,

    1. Department of Chemistry, The Hong Kong University of Science and Technology, Clear Water Bay, Kowloon, Hong Kong (P. R. China), Fax: (+852) 2358-1594
    2. Institute for Advanced Study, State Key Laboratory of Molecular Neuroscience, Institute of Molecular Functional Materials and Division of Biomedical Engineering, The Hong Kong University of Science and Technology, Clear Water Bay, Kowloon, Hong Kong (P. R. China)
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  • Dr. Jacky Wing Yip Lam,

    1. Department of Chemistry, The Hong Kong University of Science and Technology, Clear Water Bay, Kowloon, Hong Kong (P. R. China), Fax: (+852) 2358-1594
    2. Institute for Advanced Study, State Key Laboratory of Molecular Neuroscience, Institute of Molecular Functional Materials and Division of Biomedical Engineering, The Hong Kong University of Science and Technology, Clear Water Bay, Kowloon, Hong Kong (P. R. China)
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  • Dr. Zujin Zhao,

    1. College of Material, Chemistry and Chemical Engineering, Hangzhou Normal University, Hangzhou 310036 (P. R. China)
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  • Dr. Chunmei Deng,

    1. Department of Chemistry, The Hong Kong University of Science and Technology, Clear Water Bay, Kowloon, Hong Kong (P. R. China), Fax: (+852) 2358-1594
    2. Institute for Advanced Study, State Key Laboratory of Molecular Neuroscience, Institute of Molecular Functional Materials and Division of Biomedical Engineering, The Hong Kong University of Science and Technology, Clear Water Bay, Kowloon, Hong Kong (P. R. China)
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  • Dr. Shuming Chen,

    1. Center for Display Research, The Hong Kong University of Science and Technology, Clear Water Bay, Kowloon, Hong Kong (P. R. China)
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  • Dr. Ping Lu,

    1. State Key Laboratory of Supermolecular Structure and Materials, Jilin University, Changchun 150012 (P. R. China)
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  • Dr. Herman H. Y. Sung,

    1. Department of Chemistry, The Hong Kong University of Science and Technology, Clear Water Bay, Kowloon, Hong Kong (P. R. China), Fax: (+852) 2358-1594
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  • Dr. Hoi Sing Kwok,

    1. Center for Display Research, The Hong Kong University of Science and Technology, Clear Water Bay, Kowloon, Hong Kong (P. R. China)
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  • Dr. Yuguang Ma,

    1. State Key Laboratory of Supermolecular Structure and Materials, Jilin University, Changchun 150012 (P. R. China)
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  • Prof. Dr. Ian D. Williams,

    1. Department of Chemistry, The Hong Kong University of Science and Technology, Clear Water Bay, Kowloon, Hong Kong (P. R. China), Fax: (+852) 2358-1594
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  • Prof. Dr. Ben Zhong Tang

    Corresponding author
    1. Department of Chemistry, The Hong Kong University of Science and Technology, Clear Water Bay, Kowloon, Hong Kong (P. R. China), Fax: (+852) 2358-1594
    2. Institute for Advanced Study, State Key Laboratory of Molecular Neuroscience, Institute of Molecular Functional Materials and Division of Biomedical Engineering, The Hong Kong University of Science and Technology, Clear Water Bay, Kowloon, Hong Kong (P. R. China)
    • Department of Chemistry, The Hong Kong University of Science and Technology, Clear Water Bay, Kowloon, Hong Kong (P. R. China), Fax: (+852) 2358-1594
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  • AIE=aggregation-induced emission, TPE=tetraphenylethene

Abstract

A facile approach to thermally stable and efficient solid-state emitters is proposed. By hooking up tetraphenylethene (TPE) units through aryl linkers under Suzuki coupling conditions, a series of arylene bis(tetraphenylethene)s (TPE-Ar-TPE Ar=2,5-dimethyl-1,4-phenylene, 2,5-bis(hexyloxyl)-1,4-phenylene, 1,5-naphthylene, and 9,10-anthracenylene) are prepared in satisfactory to high yields (67–96 %). These molecules are nonluminescent when dissolved in solutions but become highly emissive when aggregated in poor solvents or fabricated as thin film in the solid state, displaying a phenomenon of aggregation-induced emission. Fluorescence quantum yields of 100 % were achieved in the amorphous films of the luminogens. The luminogens exhibit mechano-, vapo-, and thermochromism: their emissions can be repeatedly switched between blue and blue-green colors by simple grinding-fuming and grinding-heating cycles owing to the morphological change from a crystalline to an amorphous state and vice versa. These compounds are thermally stable, losing little of their weight at high temperatures of 421–452 °C. All the luminogens are morphological stable with high glass transition temperatures. Multilayer light-emitting diodes with a device configuration of ITO/NPB/dye/TPBi/Alq3/LiF/Al are fabricated, which emit sky-blue electroluminescence with maximum luminance and external quantum efficiency of 7900 cd m−2 and 2.1 %, respectively.

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