Ultrafast Electron Transfer in a Self-Assembling Sulfonated Aluminum Corrole–Methylviologen Complex.
Zahn, C.; Stensitzki, T.; Berg, A.; Mahammed, A.; Zacarias, A.; Gross, Z.; Heyne, K. – 2021
Photoinduced electron transfer systems can mimic certain features of natural photosynthetic reaction centers, which
are crucial for solar energy production. Among other tetra-pyrroles, the versatile chemical and photophysical properties of corroles make them very promising donors applicable in donor−acceptor complexes. Here, we present a first comprehensive study of ultrafast photoinduced electron transfer in a self-assembling sulfonated aluminum corrole−methylviologen complex combining visible and mid-IR transient absorption spectroscopy. The 14 noncovalent D−A association of the corrole−methylviologen complex has the great advantage that photoinduced charge separation becomes possible even though the back electron transfer (BET) rate is large. Initial forward electron transfer from corrole to methylviologen is observed on an ∼130 fs time scale. Subsequent back electron transfer takes place with τBET = (1.8 ± 0.5) ps, revealing very complex relaxation dynamics. Direct probing in the mid-IR allows us to unravel the back electron transfer and cooling dynamics/electronic reorganization. Upon tracing the dynamics of the methylviologen-radical marker band at 1640 cm−1 and the C=C stretching of corrole at around 1500 cm−1, we observe that large amounts of excess energy survive the back transfer, leading to the formation of hot ground state absorption. A closer examination of the signal after 300 ps, surviving the back transfer, exhibits a charge-separation yield of 10−15%.