Panchromatic light funneling through the synergy in hexabenzocoronene–(metallo)porphyrin–fullerene assemblies to realize the separation of charges†
Here, we present a novel butadiyne-linked HBC-ethynyl-porphyrin dimer, which exhibits in the ground state strong absorption cross sections throughout the UV and visible ranges of the solar spectrum. In short, a unidirectional flow of excited state energy from the HBC termini to the (metallo)porphyrin focal points enables concentrating light at the latter. Control over excitonic interactions within, for example, the electron-donating porphyrin dimers was realized by complexation of bidentate ligands to set up panchromatic absorption that extends all the way into the near-infrared range. The bidentate binding motif was then exploited to create a supramolecular electron donor–acceptor assembly based on a HBC-ethynyl-porphyrin dimer and an electron accepting bis(aminoalkyl)-substituted fullerene. Of great relevance is the fact that charge separation from the photoexcited HBC-ethynyl-porphyrin dimer to the bis(aminoalkyl)-substituted fullerene is activated not only upon photoexciting the HBCs in the UV as well as the (metallo)porphyrins in the visible but also in the NIR. Implicit is the synergetic interplay of energy and charge transfer in a photosynthetic mimicking manner. The dimer and bis-HBC-ethynyl-porphyrin monomers, which serve as references, were probed by means of steady-state as well as time-resolved optical spectroscopies, including global target analyses of the time-resolved transient absorption data.