Non-typical fluorescence studies of excited and ground state proton and hydrogen transfer

Fluorescence studies of tautomerization have been carried out for various systems that exhibit single and double proton or hydrogen translocation in various environments, such as liquid and solid condensed phases, ultracold supersonic jets, and finally, polymer matrices with single emitters.We focus on less explored areas of application of fluorescence for tautomerization studies, using porphycene, a porphyrin isomer, as an example. Fluorescence anisotropy techniques allow investigations of self-exchange reactions, where the reactant and product are formally identical. Excitation with polarized light makes it possible to monitor tautomerization in single molecules and to detect their three-dimensional orientation. Analysis of fluorescence from single vibronic levels of jet-isolated porphycene not only demonstrates coherent tunneling of two internal protons, but also indicates that the process is vibrational mode-specific. Next, we present bifunctional proton donoracceptor systems, molecules that are able, depending on the environment, to undergo excited state single intramolecular or double intermolecular proton transfer. For molecules that have donor and acceptor groups located in separate moieties linked by a single bond, excited state tautomerization can be coupled to mutual twisting of the two subunits.

Gil M, Kijak M, Piwoński H, Herbich J, Waluk J (2017) Non-typical fluorescence studies of excited and ground state proton and hydrogen transfer. Methods and Applications in Fluorescence 5: 014007. Available:

The work was supported by the grants DEC-2013/10/M/ST4/00069 and DEC-2011/02/A/ST5/00443 from the Polish National Science Centre. The funders had no role in study design, data collection and analysis, decision to publish, or preparation of the manuscript. The authors have declared that no competing interests exist.

IOP Publishing

Methods and Applications in Fluorescence


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