Effect of intercalation and chromophore arrangement on the linear and nonlinear optical properties of model aminopyridine push–pull molecules†
Three push–pull aminopyridine derivatives having D–π–A, D–(π–A)2, and D–(π–A)3 arrangements were examined as model organic chromophores capable of intercalation into inorganic layered materials (alpha modification of zirconium hydrogen phosphate, zirconium 4-sulfophenylphosphonate, and gamma modification of titanium hydrogen phosphate). The fundamental properties of these dyes, their methylated analogues as well as their intercalates were studied by X-ray analysis, electrochemistry, UV/Vis absorption spectra, TGA, IR spectra, SHG, and were completed by DFT calculations. The synthesis of tripodal tris(pyridin-4-yl)amine is given for the first time. The HOMO–LUMO gap, the position of the longest-wavelength absorption maxima, and the dipole moment of aminopyridines can easily be tuned by attaching/removing pyridin-4-yl electron withdrawing units and their quaternization (pyridine vs. pyridinium acceptors). Their intercalation proved to be feasible affording novel inorganic–organic hybrid materials. The intercalation is accompanied by protonation of the guest, which enhances its ICT and strongly anchors the aminopyridines into the confined space of the layered host. Moreover, this process results in ordering of the organic chromophores and also brings improved thermal and chemical robustness. As a result, the measured SHG efficiencies of the intercalates are larger than those observed for the pure organic push–pull chromophores. Hence, the methodology of intercalation turned out to be very useful strategy for property tuning of NLO-active organic molecules.
- This article is part of the themed collection: 2015 Journal of Materials Chemistry C Hot Papers