Diversifying the luminescence of phenanthro-diimine ligands in zinc complexes

Diana Temerova, Kristina S. Kisel, Toni Eskelinen, Alexei S. Melnikov, Niko Kinnunen, Pipsa Hirva, Julia R. Shakirova, Sergey P. Tunik, Elena V. Grachova, Igor O. Koshevoy

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Strongly blue fluorescent 1-phenyl-2-(pyridin-2-yl)-1H-phenanthro[9,10-d]imidazole (L1) is a facile block for the construction of multichromophore organic molecules, and simultaneously serves as a chelating diimine ligand. The coordination of L1 to zinc halides enhances the intraligand charge transfer and decreases the emission energy. For the iodide derivative, intra- and intermolecular heavy atom effects lead to a dual singlet-triplet emission with a temperature-dependent ratio of fluorescence and phosphorescence bands in the crystalline state. Decoration of the anthracene core with pyridyl-phenanthroimidazole units (L2 and L3) changes the localization of the lowest energy electronic transitions to the former polyaromatic motif. The solid-state photophysical characteristics of L2 and L3-based compounds strongly depend on the intermolecular interactions between the constituting p-systems (phenanthrene and anthracene), which are perturbed by the ZnX2 coordinated fragments. Modulation of p-stacking contacts in these molecular materials containing L2 and L3 chromophores forms a basis for dynamic optical properties, responsive to mechanical, thermal, or chemical stimuli.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2549-2560
Number of pages12
JournalInorganic Chemistry Frontiers
Issue number10
StatePublished - 21 May 2021

Scopus subject areas

  • Inorganic Chemistry


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