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J Phys Chem B. 2008 Mar 13;112(10):2859-67. doi: 10.1021/jp710127s. Epub 2008 Feb 19.

Validation and divergence of the activation energy barrier crossing transition at the AOT/lecithin reverse micellar interface.

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Unit for Nano Science & Technology, Department of Chemical, Biological & Macromolecular Sciences, S. N. Bose National Centre for Basic Sciences, Block JD, Sector III, Salt Lake, Kolkata, India.


In this report, the validity and divergence of the activation energy barrier crossing model for the bound to free type water transition at the interface of the AOT/lecithin mixed reverse micelle (RM) has been investigated for the first time in a wide range of temperatures by time-resolved solvation of fluorophores. Here, picosecond-resolved solvation dynamics of two fluorescent probes, ANS (1-anilino-8-naphthalenesulfonic acid, ammonium salt) and Coumarin 500 (C-500), in the mixed RM have been carefully examined at 293, 313, 328, and 343 K. Using the dynamic light scattering (DLS) technique, the size of the mixed RMs at different temperatures was found to have an insignificant change. The solvation process at the reverse micellar interface has been found to be the activation energy barrier crossing type, in which interface-bound type water molecules get converted into free type water molecules. The activation energies, Ea, calculated for ANS and C-500 are 7.4 and 3.9 kcal mol(-1), respectively, which are in good agreement with that obtained by molecular dynamics simulation studies. However, deviation from the regular Arrhenius type behavior was observed for ANS around 343 K, which has been attributed to the spatial heterogeneity of the probe environments. Time-resolved fluorescence anisotropy decay of the probes has indicated the existence of the dyes in a range of locations in RM. With the increase in temperature, the overall anisotropy decay becomes faster revealing the lability of the microenvironment at elevated temperatures.

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