A BODIPY-carbazole hybrid as a fluorescent probe: the design, synthesis, and discrimination of surfactants and the determination of the CMC values†
Surfactants play important roles in chemical industries and have become well-known environmental pollutants owing to their extensive use in different fields. In this work, we reported a fluorescent probe, namely, BDP-Zn2+ for the discrimination of four kinds of surfactants and the determination of CMC values. BDP-Zn2+ was composed of covalently linked BODIPY, carbazole, N,N-bis(2-pyridylmethyl)ethylenediamine (BPEA) and zinc ions to fabricate a novel push–pull molecular structure. Upon the addition of surfactants, the probe exhibited a turn-on fluorescence response and the emission was enhanced on increasing the surfactant concentrations. This indicated that the fluorescence intensity and the ratios of the emission at 607 nm to that at 514 nm as fingerprints could be used to identify the CMC values of the surfactants. Our current work provides an alternative method to efficiently discriminate different surfactants for the further studies of their physical and chemical functions.