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Langmuir and Langmuir−Blodgett Monolayers of Molecular Tweezers and Clips

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journal contribution
posted on 06.11.2007, 00:00 by P. Degen, T. Optenhostert, H. Rehage, C. Verhaelen, M. Lange, J. Polkowska, F.-G. Klärner
Molecular clips and tweezers are able to selectively bind electron-deficient aromatic and aliphatic substrates. By means of pressure−area isotherms and Brewster angle microscopy (BAM), the self-association process and phase behavior of dimethylene-bridged molecular clips and tetramethylene-bridged molecular tweezers each substituted with two acetoxy groups as polar head groups were investigated. In a series of experiments, we observed that the molecular surface area of the clips and tweezers only depended on the skeletal structure and not on the polar groups. The measured areas agreed with the effective molecular diameters of the molecules if the aromatic side walls of the clips or tweezers were assumed to be aligned perpendicularly to the water surface. We compared the phase behavior of the pure molecular clips and tweezers with that of the host−guest complexes of these molecules, which were formed with 1,2,4,5-tetracyanobenzene (TCNB) as the guest molecule. For the clips with a central benzene (I) and naphthalene spacer unit (II), the complex formation with TCNB had no measurable influence on the phase diagrams of the films. We observed, however, a dramatic difference in the BAM images and π−A isotherms between the pure molecular tweezers III and its complex with TCNB (TCNB@III). In addition to the πA isotherms, we used the surface potential (V)−area (A) isotherms to compare the pure tweezers III with the corresponding complex (TCNB@III). There was a strong difference in the maximum surface potential value for the pure tweezers (450 mV) and that for the complex (300 mV). In additional experiments, we prepared LB layers of such molecules, which were investigated by fluorescence spectroscopy. In comparison to the pure tweezers III, a luminescence emission of charge-transfer (CT) origin was observed for the host−guest complex (TCNB@III) fixed on the solid substrate. It turned out that the spectra were in good agreement with the results observed in chloroform solution.