Optical Activity and Optical Anisotropy in Photomechanical Crystals of Chiral Salicylidenephenylethylamines

Akifumi Takanabe, Masahito Tanaka, Kohei Johmoto, Hidehiro Uekusa, Tadashi Mori, Hideko Koshima*, Toru Asahi

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

38 Citations (Scopus)


Introducing chirality into photomechanical crystals is beneficial for the diversification of mechanical motion. Measurement of the chiroptical and optical anisotropic properties of chiral crystals is indispensable for evaluating photomechanical crystals. The platelike crystals of S- and R-enantiomers of photochromic N-3,5-di-tert-butylsalicylidene-1-phenylethylamine in enol form (enol-(S)-1 and enol-(R)-1) caused bending motion with twisting upon ultraviolet (UV) light irradiation, due to shrinkage along the length and width directions of the irradiated surface, based on the optimized crystal structure of the photoisomerized trans-keto-(S)-1. By employing the generalized high-accuracy universal polarimeter (G-HAUP), optical anisotropic (linear birefringence, LB; linear dichroism, LD) as well as chiroptical (circular birefringence, CB; circular dichroism, CD) spectra of both the enantiomeric crystals on the (001) face were simultaneously measured before and under continuous UV irradiation. The LD peak was observed at 330 nm in the negative sign, derived from the π-π∗ transition of the intramolecularly hydrogen-bonded salicylidenimino moiety. The CD spectra of the S and R crystals revealed the negative and positive Cotton effect at 330 nm, respectively, and new peaks appeared at 460 nm under UV light irradiation due to photoisomerization to the S and R trans-keto isomers at around 10% conversion. The CB and CD spectra evaluated by the HAUP measurement were opposite to those measured in the hexane solution, as well as those simulated by quantum chemical calculation. The dissymmetry parameter, g, of the enol-(S)-1 crystal along the c axis (0.013) was approximately 10 times larger than the g values in the solution (0.0010) and by calculation (0.0016).

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)15066-15077
Number of pages12
JournalJournal of the American Chemical Society
Issue number45
Publication statusPublished - 2016 Nov 16

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Catalysis
  • Chemistry(all)
  • Biochemistry
  • Colloid and Surface Chemistry


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