Vibrational relaxation dynamics of β-carotene and its derivatives with substituents on terminal rings in electronically excited states as studied by femtosecond time-resolved stimulated Raman spectroscopy in the near-IR region
The electronic and vibrational relaxation of carotenoids is one of the key processes in the protection of living cells as well as in the functions of proteins involved in photosynthesis. In this study, the electronic and vibrational relaxation dynamics of β-carotene and its derivatives with substituents on the terminal rings is investigated using femtosecond time-resolved absorption and stimulated Raman spectroscopy in the near-IR region. The carbonyl substituent induces low-frequency shifts of the steady-state and transient absorption bands, decreases of the excited-state lifetimes and the acceleration of vibrational relaxation of the conjugated main chain, whereas the hydroxyl substituent only slightly affects them. The effects of the carbonyl group in the electronic relaxation dynamics are explained well by the lengthening of effective conjugation by the carbonyl group through a partial conjugation between the main chain and the terminal ring. Time-resolved near-IR stimulated Raman spectroscopy demonstrates the significance of the peripheral substitution with the carbonyl group for the vibrational energy relaxation of β-carotene derivatives in the lowest excited singlet state.
- This article is part of the themed collection: Complex molecular systems: supramolecules, biomolecules and interfaces