Polymethine dyes in dilute solutions display many of the optical properties required for all-optical switching applications. However, in thin films, aggregation and polymethine-counterion interactions can substantially modify their properties and limit their utility. Here, we examine the impact of a series of bulky substituents on the solid-state molecular packing of thiopyrylium polymethines by using a theoretical approach combining molecular-dynamics simulations and quantum-chemical calculations. Importantly, it is found that the positions of the substituents near the center and/or ends of the dye determine the extent to which aggregation is reduced; in particular, substituents near the polymethine center primarily modify the type of aggregation that is observed, while substituents near the polymethine ends reduce aggregation and aid in maintaining solution-like properties in the solid state. Our theoretical study elucidates relationships between molecular structure and bulk optical properties and provides design guidelines for all-optical switching materials.
|Number of pages||9|
|Journal||Chemistry of Materials|
|State||Published - Nov 25 2014|
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Chemistry (all)
- Chemical Engineering (all)
- Materials Chemistry