American Chemical Society
Browse (90.29 kB)

A Steric-Repulsion-Driven Clutch Stack of Triaryltriazines: Correlated Molecular Rotations and a Thermoresponsive Gearshift in the Crystalline Solid

Download (90.29 kB)
posted on 2023-12-07, 18:36 authored by Mingoo Jin, Ryunosuke Kitsu, Natsumi Hammyo, Ayana Sato-Tomita, Motohiro Mizuno, Alexander S. Mikherdov, Mikhail Tsitsvero, Andrey Lyalin, Tetsuya Taketsugu, Hajime Ito
We report that a newly developed type of triaryltriazine rotor, which bears bulky silyl moieties on the para position of its peripheral phenylene groups, forms a columnar stacked clutch structure in the crystalline phase. The phenylene units of the crystalline rotors display two different and interconvertible correlated molecular motions. It is possible to switch between these intermolecular geared rotational motions via a thermally induced crystal-to-crystal phase transition. Variable-temperature solid-state 2H NMR measurements and X-ray diffraction studies revealed that the crystalline rotor is characterized by a vertically stacked columnar structure upon introducing a bulky Si moiety with bent geometry as the stator. The structure exhibits correlated flapping motions via a combination of 85° and ca. 95° rotations between 295 and 348 K, concurrent with a negative entropy change (ΔS = −23 ± 0.3 cal mol–1 K–1). Interestingly, heating the crystal beyond 348 K induces an anisotropic expansion of the column and lowers the steric congestion between the adjacent rotators, thus altering the correlated motions from a flapping motion to a correlated 2-fold 180° rotation with a lower entropic penalty (ΔS = −14 ± 0.5 cal mol–1 K–1). The obtained results of our study suggest that the intermolecular stacking of the C3-symmetric rotator driven by the steric repulsion of the bulky stator represents a promising strategy for producing various correlated molecular motions in the crystalline phase. Moreover, direct and reversible modulation of the intermolecularly correlated rotation is achieved via a thermally induced crystal-to-crystal phase transition, which operates as a gearshift function at the molecular level.