Linker-dependent singlet fission in tetracene dimers

N.V. Korovina, J. Joy, X. Feng, C. Feltenberger, A.I. Krylov, S.E. Bradforth, and M.E. Thompson
J. Am. Chem. Soc. 140, 10179 – 10190 (2018)

Separation of triplet excitons produced by singlet fission is crucial for efficient application of singlet fission materials. While earlier works explored the first step of singlet fission - the formation of the correlated triplet pair state, the focus of recent studies has been on understanding the second step of singlet fission - the formation of independent triplets from the correlated pair state. We present the synthesis and excited-state dynamics of meta- and para-bis(ethynyltetracenyl)benzene dimers that are analogues to the ortho-bis(ethynyltetracenyl)benzene dimer reported by our groups previously. A comparison of the excited-state properties of these dimers allows us to investigate the effects of electronic conjugation and coupling on singlet fission between the ethynyltetracene units within a dimer. In the para isomer, in which the two chromophores are conjugated, the singlet exciton yields the correlated triplet pair state, from which the triplet excitons can decouple via molecular rotations. Contrastingly, the meta isomer in which the two chromophores are cross-coupled, predominantly relaxes via radiative decay. We also report the synthesis and excited-state dynamics of two para dimers with different bridging units joining the ethynyltetracenes. The rate of singlet fission is found to be faster in the dimer with the bridging unit that has orbitals closer in energy to that of the ethynyltetracene chromophores.

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