Herein we report the one-pot synthesis of a fluorescent polymer-like material (pCD) by exploiting ruthenium-doped carbon dots (CDs) as building blocks. The unusual spectral profiles of pCDs with double-humped periodic excitation dependent photoluminescence (EDPL), and the regular changes in their corresponding average lifetime indicate the formation of high energy donor states and low energy aggregated states due to the overlap of molecular orbitals throughout the chemically switchable π-network of CDs on polymerization. To probe the electronic distribution of pCDs, we have investigated the occurrence of photoinduced electron transfer with a model electron acceptor, menadione using transient absorption technique, corroborated with low magnetic field, followed by identification of the transient radical ions generated through electron transfer. The experimentally obtained B1/2 value, a measure of the hyperfine interactions present in the system, indicates the presence of highly conjugated π-electron cloud in pCDs. The mechanism of formation of pCDs and the entire experimental findings have further been investigated through molecular modeling and computational modeling. The DFT calculations demonstrated probable electronic transitions from the surface moieties of pCDs to the tethered ligands.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
- Energy (all)
- Physical and Theoretical Chemistry
- Surfaces, Coatings and Films