Carbon nanorings with inserted acenes: Breaking symmetry in excited state dynamics

R. Franklin-Mergarejo, D. Ondarse Alvarez, S. Tretiak, S. Fernandez-Alberti

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

18 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Conjugated cycloparaphenylene rings have unique electronic properties being the smallest segments of carbon nanotubes. Their conjugated backbones support delocalized electronic excitations, which dynamics is strongly influenced by cyclic geometry. Here we present a comparative theoretical study of the electronic and vibrational energy relaxation and redistribution in photoexcited cycloparaphenylene carbon nanorings with inserted naphthalene, anthracene, and tetracene units using non-Adiabatic excited-state molecular dynamics simulations. Calculated excited state structures reflect modifications of optical selection rules and appearance of low-energy electronic states localized on the acenes due to gradual departure from a perfect circular symmetry. After photoexcitation, an ultrafast electronic energy relaxation to the lowest excited state is observed on the time scale of hundreds of femtoseconds in all molecules studied. Concomitantly, the efficiency of the exciton trapping in the acene raises when moving from naphthalene to anthracene and to tetracene, being negligible in naphthalene, and ∼60% and 70% in anthracene and tetracene within the first 500 fs after photoexcitation. Observed photoinduced dynamics is further analyzed in details using induced molecular distortions, delocatization properties of participating electronic states and non-Adiabatic coupling strengths. Our results provide a number of insights into design of cyclic molecular systems for electronic and light-harvesting applications.

Original languageEnglish
Article number31253
JournalScientific Reports
Volume6
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 8 Oct 2016
Externally publishedYes

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