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Issue 24, 2017
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Reversible light-dependent molecular switches on Ag/AgCl nanostructures

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Nanostructured Ag/AgCl substrates were used to generate reversible and highly efficient light-dependent chemical switches based on adsorbed 4,4′-dimercaptoazobenzene (DMAB). DMAB was formed in situ via laser-induced dimerization either from 4-nitrothiophenol (4-NTP) or 4-aminothiophenol (4-ATP). The subsequent reaction pathways of DMAB, however, were quite different as monitored by surface enhanced Raman spectroscopy. In the 4-NTP/DMAB system, AgCl catalyses the reversal of the dimerization. Conversely, irradiation of adsorbed 4-ATP first generated cis-DMAB attached to the surface via two Ag–S bonds, followed by AgCl-catalysed cleavage of one Ag–S bond and cistrans photoisomerisation of DMAB. In the dark, the trans-isomer thermally reverts to cis-DMAB. The here presented light–dark chemical switches, which work without changing other parameters (e.g., pH, anaerobic vs. aerobic), are based on the (photo)catalytic properties of the Ag/AgCl substrate and do not function on pure metal surfaces.

Graphical abstract: Reversible light-dependent molecular switches on Ag/AgCl nanostructures

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Publication details

The article was received on 18 Apr 2017, accepted on 28 May 2017 and first published on 01 Jun 2017

Article type: Paper
DOI: 10.1039/C7NR02760E
Citation: Nanoscale, 2017,9, 8380-8387

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    Reversible light-dependent molecular switches on Ag/AgCl nanostructures

    W. Song, C. J. Querebillo, R. Götz, S. Katz, U. Kuhlmann, U. Gernert, I. M. Weidinger and P. Hildebrandt, Nanoscale, 2017, 9, 8380
    DOI: 10.1039/C7NR02760E

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