Hexakis-adducts of fullerene as molecular scaffolds of polynuclear spin-crossover molecules†
A family of hexakis-substituted fullerene adducts endowed with the well-known tridentate 2,6-bis(pyrazol-1-yl)pyridine (bpp) ligand for spin-crossover (SCO) systems has been designed and synthesized. It has been experimentally and theoretically demonstrated that these molecular scaffolds are able to form polynuclear SCO complexes in solution. UV-vis and fluorescence spectroscopy studies have allowed monitoring of the formation of up to six Fe(II)–bpp SCO complexes. In addition, DFT calculations have been performed to model the different complexation environments and simulate their electronic properties. The complexes retain SCO properties in the solid state exhibiting both thermal- and photoinduced spin transitions, as confirmed by temperature-dependent magnetic susceptibility and Raman spectroscopy measurements. The synthesis of these complexes demonstrates that fullerene hexakis-adducts are excellent and versatile platforms to develop polynuclear SCO systems in which a fullerene core is surrounded by a SCO molecular shell.