Scientific article
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Local viscosity of binary water+glycerol mixtures at liquid/liquid interfaces probed by time-resolved surface second harmonic generation

Published inJournal of physical chemistry. C, vol. 113, no. 48, p. 20705-20712
Publication date2009

The excited-state relaxation of malachite green and brilliant green in solvents of various viscosity has been investigated at liquid/liquid interfaces and in bulk solutions by surface second harmonic generation and transient absorption spectroscopy. Mixtures of water and glycerol in various proportions have been used as solvents of variable viscosity. Transient absorption measurements in bulk revealed that both dyes are suitable as a probe of local viscosity for water+glycerol mixtures and that two of three processes following the optical excitation exhibit the same power dependence on solvent viscosity. This observation leads to assignment of the processes to a twist and twist-back of the aromatic rings attached to the central carbon atom of the dye. Therefore, identification of the intermediate state observed in the radiationless deactivation pathway with the twisted form of the dye has been supported. The time profiles of the second harmonic signal recorded at water+glycerol/dodecane interfaces have been found to be monoexponential at low dye concentrations (below 10−5 M) and biexponential at higher concentrations, and therefore the origin of the slower component has been attributed to the relaxation of dye aggregates adsorbed at the interface. The decay times measured at interfaces increased with increasing amount of glycerol in the mixture, but the rise was slower than in bulk solution. Therefore, the viscosity at the interfacial region, higher than that of the bulk solution, is mainly determined by structural modification of the solvent resulting from interactions between the two liquids that constitute the interface and addition of glycerol affects viscosity, only to a lesser extent. We have also shown that if the viscosity of the upper layer is much higher (at least 1 order of magnitude) than that of water or short alkanes, a slow-down of the relaxation is observed. This contradicts earlier findings and means that large amplitude motion of all three rings is involved in the deactivation of the excited molecule, but the rotation of the phenyl ring, which is smaller than the alkyl-substituted aniline groups, becomes a bottleneck for the relaxation in very viscous environments.

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Citation (ISO format)
FITA, Piotr, PUNZI, Angela, VAUTHEY, Eric. Local viscosity of binary water+glycerol mixtures at liquid/liquid interfaces probed by time-resolved surface second harmonic generation. In: Journal of physical chemistry. C, 2009, vol. 113, n° 48, p. 20705–20712. doi: 10.1021/jp906676x
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ISSN of the journal1932-7447

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