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J Phys Chem B. 2015 Sep 3;119(35):11846-57. doi: 10.1021/acs.jpcb.5b07663. Epub 2015 Aug 20.

Bimodal Exciplex Formation in Bimolecular Photoinduced Electron Transfer Revealed by Ultrafast Time-Resolved Infrared Absorption.

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1
Department of Physical Chemistry, University of Geneva , 30 Quai Ernest-Ansermet, CH-1211 Geneva 4, Switzerland.

Abstract

The dynamics of a moderately exergonic photoinduced charge separation has been investigated by ultrafast time-resolved infrared absorption with the dimethylanthracene/phthalonitrile donor/acceptor pair in solvents covering a broad range of polarity. A distinct spectral signature of an exciplex could be identified in the -C≡N stretching region. On the basis of quantum chemistry calculations, the 4-5 times larger width of this band compared to those of the ions and of the locally excited donor bands is explained by a dynamic distribution of exciplex geometry with different mutual orientations and distances of the constituents and, thus, with varying charge-transfer character. Although spectrally similar, two types of exciplexes could be distinguished by their dynamics: short-lived, "tight", exciplexes generated upon static quenching and longer-lived, "loose", exciplexes formed upon dynamic quenching in parallel with ion pairs. Tight exciplexes were observed in all solvents, except in the least polar diethyl ether where quenching is slower than diffusion. The product distribution of the dynamic quenching depends strongly on the solvent polarity: whereas no significant loose exciplex population could be detected in acetonitrile, both exciplex and ion pair are generated in less polar solvents, with the relative population of exciplex increasing with decreasing solvent polarity. These results are compared with those reported previously with donor/acceptor pairs in different driving force regimes to obtain a comprehensive picture of the role of the exciplexes in bimolecular photoinduced charge separation.

PMID:
26264856
DOI:
10.1021/acs.jpcb.5b07663
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