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Nature and Energies of Electrons and Holes in a Conjugated Polymer, Polyfluorene

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journal contribution
posted on 20.12.2006, 00:00 by Norihiko Takeda, Sadayuki Asaoka, John R. Miller
Electrons and holes were injected selectively into poly-2,7-(9,9-dihexylfluorene) (pF) dissolved in a tetrahydrofuran (THF) and a 1,2-dichloroethane (DCE) solution, respectively, using pulse radiolysis. Transient absorption spectra of monoions of both signs revealed two bands attributable to formation of polarons, one in the visible region (pF+• at 580 nm, pF-• at 600 nm) and another in the near-IR region. Additional confirmation for the identification of pF+• and pF-• comes from bimolecular charge-transfer reactions, such as bithiophene-• + pF → pF-• or pF+• + TTA → +TTA+• (TTA = tri-p-tolylamine), in which known radical ions transfer charge to pF or from pF. Difference absorption spectra of pF chemically reduced by sodium in THF provided a ratio of absorbance of anions formed to bleaching of the neutral band at 380 nm. In conjunction with pulse-radiolysis results, the data show that each polaron occupies 4.5 ± 0.5 fluorene units, most probably contiguous units. Extensive reduction of pF by sodium also revealed resistance to formation of bipolarons:  excess electrons reside as separate polarons when two or more electrons were injected. Redox equilibria with pyrene and terthiophene by pulse radiolysis established reversible one-electron redox potentials of E0(pF+/0) = +0.66 V and E0(pF0/-) = −2.65 V vs Fc+/0. Together with the excited-state energy, these results predict a singlet exciton binding energy of 0.2 eV for pF in the presence of 0.1 M tetrabutylammonium tetrafluoroborate. This binding energy would increase substantially without an electrolyte.