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American Chemical Society

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Journal of Physical Chemistry A

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DOI: 10.1021/acs.jpca.3c03511


Excimeric systems (i.e., excited dimers) have well served as model compounds for the study of the delocalization of electronic energy over weakly interacting chromophores. However, there remain relatively few isolated systems in which such interactions can be studied experimentally at a level to afford detailed comparisons with theory. In this Article, we examine a series of covalently and noncovalently linked dimers of fluorene, as a model aromatic chromophore, where the formation of excimers requires a π-stacked, cofacial orientation at van der Waals contact. Building upon a series of seminal prior studies that examined vibronic quenching of the excitation interaction in van der Waals dimers, the key question that we sought to address here is whether a single quenching factor could reproduce experimental excitonic splittings across a series of covalently and noncovalently linked bichromophoric systems built from the same chromophore. In comparing experimentally measured excitonic splittings with calculated static splittings using time-dependent density functional methods, we find that all systems save one fall on a line with a slope of 0.080(8), reflecting a vibrational quenching of roughly 1 order of magnitude. The outlier, which shows a significantly reduced quenching factor, represents a cyclophane-linked system where the fluorene moieties are constrained in a cofacial arrangement. We argue that this system evidences the transition from the weak to intermediate coupling regime.


Accepted version. Journal of Physical Chemistry A, Vol. 127, No. 34 (2023): 7198-7204. DOI. © 2023 American Chemical Society. Used with permission.

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