On the morphology of a discotic liquid crystalline charge transfer complex

No Thumbnail Available
Journal Title
Journal ISSN
Volume Title
American Chemical Society
Discotic liquid crystalline (DLC) charge transfer (CT) complexes, which combine visible light absorption with rapid charge transfer characteristics within the CT complex, can have a great potential for photovoltaic applications when they can be made to self-assemble in a bulk heterojunction arrangement with separate channels for electron and hole conduction. However, the morphology of some liquid crystalline CT complexes has been under debate for many years. In particular, the liquid crystalline CT complex built from the electron acceptor 2,4,7-trinitro-9-fluorenone (TNF) and discotic molecules has been reported to have the TNF "sandwiched" either between the discotic molecules within the same column or between the columns within the aliphatic tails of the discotic molecules. We present a detailed structural study of the prototypic 1:1 mixture of the discotic 2,3,6,7,10,11-hexakis(hexyloxy)triphenylene (HAT6) and TNF. Nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) line widths and cross-polarization rates are consistent with the picosecond time scale anisotropic thermal motions of the HAT6 and TNF molecules previously observed. By computational integration of Rietveld refinement analyses of neutron diffraction patterns with density experiments and short-range structural constraints from heteronuclear 2D NMR, we determine that the TNF molecules are vertically oriented between HAT6 columns. The data provide the insight that a morphology of separate hole conducting channels of HAT6 molecules can be realized in the liquid crystalline CT complex. © 2012, American Chemical Society.
Solar cells, Nuclear magnetic resonance, Spectroscopy, Neutron diffraction, Morphology, Dynamics
Haverkate, L. A., Zbiri, M., Johnson, M. R., Deme, B., de Groot, H. J. M., Lefeber, F., Kotlewski, A., Picken, S. J., Mulder, F. M., & Kearley, G. J. (2012). On the morphology of a discotic liquid crystalline charge transfer complex. Journal of Physical Chemistry B, 116(43), 13098-13105. doi:10.1021/jp306412u