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Synthesis and Photophysics of Thioindigo Diimines and Related Compounds

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posted on 03.10.2014, 00:00 by Geneviève Boice, Brian O. Patrick, Robert McDonald, Cornelia Bohne, Robin Hicks
We report the synthesis and comprehensive characterization of diamine and diimine derivatives of the fluorescent compound thioindigo. Diamines 1 were obtained by metal-mediated amine condensation reaction with thioindigo. Oxidation of the products of the coupling reaction provided the diimines 2. X-ray crystal structures, cyclic voltammetry, and spectral and photophysical data of the compounds are presented. X-ray crystal structures demonstrate a planar structure for the diimine derivatives and a twisted conformation for the diamines. The diamine compounds 1 absorb in the UV (λmax 324–328 nm), significantly blue-shifted from the absorption spectrum of thioindigo. Diamines 1 exhibit moderate fluorescence (ΦF = 0.25, 0.045). A transient triplet state is observed in laser flash photolysis (LFP) experiments of 1, with lifetimes 1 order of magnitude longer than those of thioindigo. The diimine compounds 2 absorb at longer wavelengths (λmax 495–510 nm) than the diamines but are still slightly blue-shifted from thioindigo, with molar extinction coefficients 17–70% higher compared to thioindigo. The diimine compounds are not emissive, and LFP studies indicate transient species with microsecond lifetimes. Quenching experiments and transient absorption spectra are consistent with trans–cis isomerization.