Recent progresses on diarylethene based photochromic switches
Organic photochromic materials have received considerable attention because of their potential for photonic applications, especially for fast and high density data storage. In 2000, Chemical Reviews published a special issue on photochromic materials including a review about the properties and applications of diarylethene photochromic compounds. Since then much impressive progress has been made in this area. Various new diarylethene derivatives have been prepared and examined. The tutorial review presented herein describes developments in diarylethene-based molecular switches made in the last three years. In addition, the synthetic aspects of diarylethene photochromic compounds, which are important issues and neglected in most previous reviews, have been included.