CrIII as an alternative to RuII in metallo-supramolecular chemistry†
Compared to divalent ruthenium coordination complexes, which are widely exploited as parts of multi-component photonic devices, optically active trivalent chromium complexes are under-represented in multi-metallic supramolecular architectures performing energy conversion mainly because of the tricky preparation of stable heteroleptic CrIII building blocks. We herein propose some improvements with the synthesis of a novel family of kinetically inert heteroleptic bis-terdentate mononuclear complexes, which can be incorporated into dinuclear rod-like dyads as a proof-of-concept. The mechanism and magnitude of intermetallic Cr⋯Cr communication have been unraveled by a combination of magnetic, photophysical and thermodynamic investigations. Alternated aromatic/alkyne connectors provided by Sonogashira coupling reactions emerge as the most efficient wires for long-distance communication between two chromium centres bridged by Janus-type back-to-back bis-terdentate receptors.