Stealth fast photoswitching of negative photochromic naphthalene-bridged phenoxyl-imidazolyl radical complexes†
Naphthalene-bridged phenoxyl-imidazolyl radical complex (Np-PIC) is a novel fast switchable negative photochromic compound, which shows the thermal back reaction in the millisecond time scale. Upon UV light irradiation, Np-PIC shows the hypochromic effect in the UVA region due to there being less conjugation in the transient isomer. By replacing the phenoxyl unit with a naphthoxyl unit, the molecular structure has an asymmetric carbon, leading to fast chiroptical switching. This simple molecular design will be a good candidate for the future development of negative photochromic compounds.