Rotaxane PtII-complexes: mechanical bonding for chemically robust luminophores and stimuli responsive behaviour†
We report an approach to rotaxanes in which the metal ion of a cyclometallated PtII luminophore is embedded in the space created by the mechanical bond. Our results show that the interlocked ligand environment stabilises a normally labile PtII–triazole bond against displacement by competing ligands and that the crowded environment of the mechanical bond retards oxidation of the PtII centre, without perturbing the photophysical properties of the complex. When an additional pyridyl binding site is included in the axle, the luminescence of the PtII centre is quenched, an effect that can be selectively reversed by the binding of AgI. Our results suggest that readily available interlocked metal-based phosphors can be designed to be stimuli responsive and have advantages as stabilised triplet harvesting dopants for device applications.