We have comparatively investigated the single-molecule photophysical properties of two chlorophyll trefoils that feature distinctive electronic couplings induced by differences in linkage: one is an ethynyl-linked chlorophyll trefoil (1) in which relatively short and rigid linkage between the chromophores promotes effective electronic coupling, and the other is a phenyl-ethynyl-linked chlorophyll trefoil (2) in which the phenyl addition induces an orthogonal geometry impeding π-conjugation and provides a longer interchlorophyll distance reducing through-space interaction. By recording single-molecule fluorescence intensity trajectories and their corresponding lifetimes, we observed one-step photobleaching behaviors, less frequent on-off behaviors, a narrower fluorescence lifetime distribution, and higher photostability in 1 as compared with 2. These results indicate that the performance of molecular photosynthetic systems in the solid state is strongly associated with electronic couplings and, thus, give insight into the construction of well-functioning artificial photosynthetic systems.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Materials Science(all)
- Physical and Theoretical Chemistry