Photochromic molecules explored in MOF environment

Daniel Stubing High Res Edit 005510 August 2016:

Researchers from the CNBP have published a paper representing the first major study of the stability and compatibility of the major classes of photochromic compounds within the microstructured optical fibre (MOF) environment.

In developing light-responsive surfaces, investigators face several challenges, not only in achieving high photostationary states and fully reversible switching, but also in fluorescence properties and fatigue resistance upon continuous exposure to high intensity light. However, information on the latter two are often lacking as studies on photochromic compounds are often focused on photoswitching, or absorbance and colour changes. To address this gap in literature, the fluorescence and photostability of four major types of photochromic molecules (azobenzene, spiropyran, indolyfulgide and diarylalkene) when dissolved in DMSO, or acetonitrile, or adsorbed to a MOF silica surface were investigated.

Journal: Sensors and Actuators B: Chemical.

Publication title: A Comparative Study of the Fluorescence and Photostability of Common Photoswitches in Microstructured Optical Fibre.

Authors: Daniel B. Stubing (pictured top left), Sabrina Heng, Tanya M. Monro and Andrew D. Abell.

Abstract: The fluorescence spectra and photostability under 532 nm laser excitation of four different common photoswitches (an azobenzene, spiropyran, indolylfulgide, and a diarylperfluorocyclopentene) were investigated in a silica microstructured optical fibre. An example of each photoswitch was examined in solution and physically adsorbed to the silica fibre surface. This comparison was made to define fluorescence behaviour in these two states and to determine which photoswitch has the best performance in this light intense microenvironment. The azobenzene and the spiropyran switches demonstrated the strongest fluorescence response and the least degradation of the fluorescence signal.

The paper is available online.