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Optics, Organic Chemistry, Physical chemistry

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Journal Physical Chemistry Letters


The efficiency of photon upconversion via triplet–triplet annihilation is characterized by an upconversion quantum yield (ΦUC); however, uncertainties remain for its determination. Here, we present a new approach for the relative measurement of ΦUC for green-to-blue upconversion using BODIPY–pyrene donor–acceptor dyad (BD1) as a heavy-atom-free triplet sensitizer. This new approach exploits broad fluorescence from a charge-transfer (CT) state of BD1, which possesses (i) a significant Stokes shift of 181 nm in dichloromethane and (ii) a comparably high CT-fluorescence quantum yield (Φref = 7.0 ± 0.2%), which is independent from oxygen presence and emitter (perylene) concentration while also exhibiting a linear intensity dependence. On the basis of this, we developed an upconversion reference using the BD1 sensitizer mixed with perylene (1 × 10–5 M/1 × 10–4 M) in dichloromethane. With this reference system, we investigated the performance of three BODIPY donor–acceptor dyads in the upconversion process and achieved one of the highest ΦUC of 6.9 ± 0.2% observed for heavy-atom-free sensitizers to date.


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