Photofunctional host–guest hybrid materials and thin films of lanthanide complexes covalently linked to functionalized zeolite A
Eight host–guest assemblies of zeolite A (ZA) and their thin films have been synthesized. The assembly of zeolite A was prepared by first embedding lanthanide complexes (Eu(TTA)n or Tb(TAA)n) into the cages of zeolite A and then grafting lanthanide complexes (Eu(L) or Tb(L), L = bipy or phen) onto the surface of functionalized zeolite A via 3-(methacryloyloxy)propyltrimethoxysilane (γ-MPS). The obtained organic–inorganic hybrid materials were investigated by means of XRD, FT-IR, SEM and luminescence spectroscopy. Firstly, the dependence of the crystal stability of zeolite A as the host of lanthanide complexes on the level of ion exchange was studied by XRD. The results indicated the degradation and partial collapse of zeolite A framework occurred upon doping with high amounts of lanthanide complexes into its channels. The integrity of zeolite A’s framework was well maintained after fabrication through careful control of the ion-exchange extent. Secondly, the thin films of zeolite A assemblies obtained this way have the properties of homogeneous dense packing and a high degree of coverage of the crystals on the ITO glass, as shown in SEM images. Thirdly, the luminescence behavior of all the materials were investigated in detail. Among them, four white light-emitting materials from a three-component system that comprises a blue-emitting zeolite A matrix, a red-emitting europium complex and a green-emitting terbium complex were obtained.