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Crystal Structures and Emission Properties of the BF2 Complex 1-Phenyl-3-(3,5-dimethoxyphenyl)-propane-1,3-dione: Multiple Chromisms, Aggregation- or Crystallization-Induced Emission, and the Self-Assembly Effect

Galer, Petra, Korošec, Romana C., Vidmar, Maja, Šket, Boris
Journal of the American Chemical Society 2014 v.136 no.20 pp. 7383-7394
color, crystal structure, crystals, hydrogen bonding, microstructure, sublimation
It is known that electron donating groups have quite a different effect on the π-delocalization of a conjugate system when bonded at ortho and para as compared to meta positions in the phenyl ring. In the present work, the BF₂ complex of 1-phenyl-3-(3,5-dimethoxyphenyl)-propane-1,3-dione (1), a molecule with two methoxy groups in one of the phenyl rings at meta positions, was prepared. Compound 1 exists as two polymorphs having different mutual orientations of the two methoxy groups: in polymorph A away from each other (termed anti), while in polymorph B one methoxy group is oriented toward the other (syn–anti). In both crystals, the molecules which are antiparallel (the subPh rings as well as dioxaborine are on opposite sides) form stacks through face-to-face π–π interactions, while in polymorph A the crystal packing is further stabilized by intermolecular C(phenyl)–H···F and C(methoxy)–H···F hydrogen bonds. Solid A possesses numerous chromic effects, including mechano-, thermo-, and chronochromism, though the latter to a lesser extent, as well as the effect of rearrangement of the amorphous phase into a more stable crystalline phase A, associated with crystallization-induced emission enhancement (CIEE). The solid-state emission can be repeatedly switched regarding its color and efficiency with excellent reversibility by external stimuli. On the other hand, crystalline solid B undergoes thermal interconversion of syn–anti to the anti conformer. Compound 1 shows a solvatochromic effect (SE), is aggregation-induced emission (AIE) active, and through the sublimation process displays self-assembling crystalline platelike microstructures or microfibers that reveal an obvious optical waveguide effect.