Resolving electron injection from singlet fission-borne triplets into mesoporous transparent conducting oxides

Melissa K. Gish, Emily K. Raulerson, Ryan T. Pekarek, Ann L. Greenaway, Karl J. Thorley, Nathan R. Neale, John E. Anthony, Justin C. Johnson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Photoinduced electron transfer into mesoporous oxide substrates is well-known to occur efficiently for both singlet and triplet excited states in conventional metal-to-ligand charge transfer (MLCT) dyes. However, in all-organic dyes that have the potential for producing two triplet states from one absorbed photon, called singlet fission dyes, the dynamics of electron injection from singlet vs. triplet excited states has not been elucidated. Using applied bias transient absorption spectroscopy with an anthradithiophene-based chromophore (ADT-COOH) adsorbed to mesoporous indium tin oxide (nanoITO), we modulate the driving force and observe changes in electron injection dynamics. ADT-COOH is known to undergo fast triplet pair formation in solid-state films. We find that the electronic coupling at the interface is roughly one order of magnitude weaker for triplet vs. singlet electron injection, which is potentially related to the highly localized nature of triplets without significant charge-transfer character. Through the use of applied bias on nanoITO:ADT-COOH films, we map the electron injection rate constant dependence on driving force, finding negligible injection from triplets at zero bias due to competing recombination channels. However, at driving forces greater than -0.6 eV, electron injection from the triplet accelerates and clearly produces a trend with increased applied bias that matches predictions from Marcus theory with a metallic acceptor.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)11146-11156
Number of pages11
JournalChemical Science
Issue number33
StatePublished - Sep 7 2021

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
The authors would like to acknowledge G. Michael Carroll for his assistance with steady state spectroelectrochemical and cyclic voltammetry measurements. This work was authored by Alliance for Sustainable Energy, LLC, the manager and operator of the National Renewable Energy Laboratory for the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) under Contract No. DE-AC36-08GO28308. Funding provided by U.S. Department of Energy, Office of Basic Energy Sciences, Division of Chemical Sciences, Biosciences, and Geosciences. The views expressed in the article do not necessarily represent the views of the DOE or the U.S. Government. The U.S. Government retains and the publisher, by accepting the article for publication, acknowledges that the U.S. Government retains a nonexclusive, paid-up, irrevocable, worldwide license to publish or reproduce the published form of this work, or allow others to do so, for U.S. Government purposes. Dye synthesis efforts were supported by the National Science Foundation under Cooperative Agreement No. 1849213 and CHE-2003735 for ITO electrode preparation.

Publisher Copyright:
© The Royal Society of Chemistry.

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Chemistry (all)


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