Fullerene–porphyrin [n]pseudorotaxanes: self-assembly, photophysics and third-order NLO response†
By means of different spectroscopic techniques, we investigate a novel series of porphyrin derivatives (H2TPP), connected to dibenzo-24-crown-8 (DB24C8) moieties, which undergo self-assembly with different methanofullerene units bearing dibenzylammonium (DBA) cations. The formation of both  and pseudorotaxanes was proved by means of NMR, UV-Vis-NIR absorption and emission spectroscopies. With the support of molecular modelling studies, spectroscopic investigations showed the presence of a secondary interaction between the porphyrin and the C60 chromophores leading to the formation of different types of “face-to-face” assemblies. Remarkably, investigations of the non-linear optical response of these supramolecular systems showed that individual porphyrin and fullerene derivatives exhibit significantly lower second hyperpolarizability values when compared to their pseudorotaxanes functionalised counterparts. This proves that this class of supramolecular materials possesses relevant NLO response, which strongly depends on the structural arrangement of the chromophores in solution.
- This article is part of the themed collection: Electron delocalization and aromaticity: 150 years of the Kekulé benzene structure