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J Phys Chem A. 2012 Jul 26;116(29):7629-35. doi: 10.1021/jp3027258. Epub 2012 Jul 11.

Intramolecular transport of charge carriers in trimeric aniline upon a three-step acid doping process.

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Department of Chemical and Biological Sciences, Polytechnic Institute of New York University, Six MetroTech Center, Brooklyn, New York 11201, USA.


The "acid doping" of a methyl-capped aniline trimer, N-[4-(dimethylamino)phenyl]-N-(4-{[4-(dimethylamino)phenyl]imino}-2,5- cyclohexadien-1-ylidene)-amine (TANI), was performed stoichiometrically to study the nature of charge carriers induced by the acid protonation process. The redox centers in TANI were found to undergo a reversible three-step protonation with 1 equiv, 2 equiv and a large molar excess of dodecylbenzenesulfonic acid (DBSA) in chloroform, as evidenced by three different chromophores (doping levels I, II and III) observed using UV-vis-NIR. Acidity of the dopants and solvent polarity were controlling factors. As revealed by electron paramagnetic resonance spectroscopy (EPR), the doping levels I, II, and III achieved by doping 0.1 mM TANI/chloroform solutions with different amounts of DBSA exhibited relative spin densities of 1:1.2:2.2. Since the expected maximum spin population of TANI through acid doping is two spins per molecule, the reduced paramagnetism given by the doubly protonated TANI (doping level II) indicated partially coupled unpaired spins. The third protonation step (doping level III) produced almost double the unpaired spin concentration compared to the lower doping levels and a multiline EPR spectrum likely comprising two overlapping signals of similar overall line width. The hyperfine couplings contributing to the splittings in this signal were estimated by simulation incorporating 6-H and 1-N nuclei most likely from one highly localized unpaired spin on a terminal dimethylamino group, with an underlying apparent singlet arising from a delocalized unpaired spin; the diradical proposed as the species exhibiting the multiplet EPR signal is isolated by the bridging ammonium cation created by the third doping step. The phenomena suggested the stepwise evolution of partly formed diamagnetic bipolarons from polaron interactions at doping level II and the transformation to the more isolated unsymmetrical system we label "two polarons on a chain" in a triplet state at doping level III. The results provide the characterization of novel doping behaviors for a trimeric aniline molecule in organic solution.


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