Insights into the Photo-induced Isomerization Mechanisms of a N,C-Chelate Organoboron Compound : a Theoretical Study.


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As the first discovered organoboron compound with photochromic property, B(ppy)Mes(2) (ppy=2-phenylpyridine, Mes=mesityl) displays rich photochemistry that constitutes a solid foundation for wide applications in optoelectronic fields. In this work, we investigated the B(ppy)Mes(2) to borirane isomerization mechanisms in the three lowest electronic states (S-0, S-1, and T-1) based on the complete active space self-consistent field (CASSCF) and its second-order perturbation (CASPT2) methods combined with time-dependent density functional theory (TD-DFT) calculations. Our results show that the photoisomerization in the S-1 state is dominant, which is initiated by the cleavage of the B-C-ppy bond. After overcoming a barrier of 0.5 eV, the reaction pathway leads to a conical intersection between the S-1 and S-0 states (S-1/S-0)(x), from which the decay path may go back to the reactant B(ppy)Mes(2) via a closed-shell intermediate (Int1-S-0) or to the product borirane via a biradical intermediate (Int2-S-0). Although triplet states are probably involved in the photoinduced process, the possibility of the photoisomerization in T-1 state is very small owing to the weakly allowed S-1 -> T-1 intersystem crossing and the high energy barrier (0.77 eV). In addition, we found the photoisomerization is thermally reversible, which is consistent with the experimental observations.
excited states,organoboron compounds,photochemistry,photochromism,quantum chemical calculations
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