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Issue 41, 2018
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Unusual effects in single molecule tautomerization: hemiporphycene

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Parent hemiporphycene, a recently obtained constitutional isomer of porphyrin, exists in room temperature solutions and polymer matrices in the form of two trans tautomers interconverting via double hydrogen transfer. Using confocal fluorescence microscopy, it was possible to monitor tautomerization in single hemiporphycene molecules embedded in a PMMA film by monitoring the spectral and temporal evolution of their fluorescence spectra. The emission spectra of the two tautomeric forms are similar to those obtained from ensemble studies. However, the analysis of temporal spectral evolution reveals effects not detected in the bulk. For some single molecules, a large decrease of tautomerization rate was observed. This is interpreted as an indication of multidimensional character of the tautomerization coordinate and coupling of the reaction with the polymer relaxation processes. In addition, fluorescence lifetimes obtained for single molecules are significantly shorter than those measured for the bulk. It is proposed that the shortening is caused by environment-induced distortion of the molecule, which enhances the S0 ← S1 internal conversion rate by lowering the barrier to excited state single hydrogen transfer. This effect seems to reflect the specific morphology of thin (30 nm) polymer samples, because it is not observed in ensemble studies carried out using thick (tens of micrometers or more) PMMA films.

Graphical abstract: Unusual effects in single molecule tautomerization: hemiporphycene

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Publication details

The article was received on 15 Sep 2018, accepted on 01 Oct 2018 and first published on 10 Oct 2018

Article type: Paper
DOI: 10.1039/C8CP05836A
Citation: Phys. Chem. Chem. Phys., 2018,20, 26591-26596
  • Open access: Creative Commons BY-NC license
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    Unusual effects in single molecule tautomerization: hemiporphycene

    V. Kim, L. Piatkowski, M. Pszona, R. Jäger, J. Ostapko, J. Sepioł, A. J. Meixner and J. Waluk, Phys. Chem. Chem. Phys., 2018, 20, 26591
    DOI: 10.1039/C8CP05836A

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