The synthesis, comparative physicochemical properties, and solid-state structures of five oligothiophene (nT) series differing in substituent nature and attachment, regiochemistry, and oligothiophene core length (n) are described. These five series include the following 25 compounds: (i) α,ω-diperfluorohexyl-nTs 1 (DFH-nTs, n = 2-6), (ii) β,β′-diperfluorohexyl-nTs 2 (isoDFH-nTs, n = 2-6), (iii) α,ω-dihexyl-nTs 3 (DH-nTs, n = 2-6), (iv) β,β′- dihexyl-nTs 4 (isoDH-nTs, n = 2-6), and (v) unsubstituted oligothiophenes 5 (αnTs, n = 2-6). All new compounds were characterized by elemental analysis, mass spectrometry, and multinuclear NMR spectroscopy. To probe and address quantitatively how the chemistry and regiochemistry of conjugated core substitution affects molecular and solid-state properties, the entire 1-5 series was investigated by differential scanning calorimetry, thermogravimetric analysis, and optical absorption and emission spectroscopies. Single-crystal X-ray diffraction data for several fluorocarbon-substituted oligomers are also presented and compared. The combined analysis of these data indicates that fluorocarbon-substituted nT molecules strongly interact in the condensed state, with unit cell level phase separation between the aromatic core and fluorocarbon chains. Surprisingly, despite these strong intermolecular interactions, high solid-state fluorescence efficiencies are exhibited by the fluorinated derivatives. Insight into the solution molecular geometries and conformational behavior are obtained from analysis of optical and variable-temperature NMR spectra. Finally, cyclic voltammetry data offer a reliable picture of frontier MO energies, which, in combination with DFT computations, provide key information on relationships between oligothiophene substituent effects and electronic response properties.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Colloid and Surface Chemistry