American Chemical Society
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Rational Syntheses of Cyclic Hexameric Porphyrin Arrays for Studies of Self-Assembling Light-Harvesting Systems

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journal contribution
posted on 2001-10-09, 00:00 authored by Lianhe Yu, Jonathan S. Lindsey
Two new cyclic hexameric arrays of porphyrins have been prepared in a rational, convergent manner. The porphyrins in each cyclic hexamer are joined by diphenylethyne linkers affording a wheel-like array with a diameter of ∼35 Å. One array is comprised of five zinc (Zn) porphyrins and one free base (Fb) porphyrin (cyclo-Zn5FbU) while the other is comprised of an alternating sequence of two Zn porphyrins and one Fb porphyrin (cyclo-Zn2FbZn2FbU). The prior synthesis employed a one-flask template-directed process and afforded alternating Zn and Fb porphyrins or all Zn porphyrins. More diverse metalation patterns are attractive for manipulating the flow of excited-state energy in the arrays. The rational synthesis of each array employed three Pd-mediated coupling reactions with four tetraarylporphyrin building blocks bearing diethynyl, diiodo, bromo/iodo, or iodo/ethynyl groups. The final ring closure yielding the cyclic hexamer was achieved by reaction of a porphyrin pentamer + porphyrin monomer or the joining of two porphyrin trimers. In the presence of a tripyridyl template, the yields of the 5 + 1 and 3 + 3 reactions ranged from 10 to 13%. The 5 + 1 reaction in the absence of the template proceeded in 3.5% yield, thereby establishing the structure-directed contribution to cyclic hexamer formation. The 3 + 3 route relied on successive ethyne + iodo/bromo coupling reactions. One template-directed route to cyclo-Zn2FbZn2FbU employed a magnesium porphyrin, affording cyclo-Zn2FbZn2MgU from which magnesium was selectively removed. The arrays exhibit absorption spectra that are nearly the sum of the spectra of the component parts, indicating weak electronic coupling. Fluorescence spectroscopy showed that the quantum yield of energy transfer in toluene at room temperature from the Zn porphyrins to the Fb porphyrin(s) was 60% in cyclo-Zn5FbU and 90% in cyclo-Zn2FbZn2FbU. Two dipyridyl-substituted porphyrins, a Zn tetraarylporphyrin and a Fb oxaporphyrin, have been synthesized for use as guests in the cyclic hexamers, affording self-assembled arrays for light-harvesting studies.