Synthesis and Photophysical Properties of Asymmetric Substituted Silafluorenes

Several 1,3-diphenyl-substituted silafluorene compounds were synthesized and characterized as potential fluorescent materials for OLED fabrication and bioimaging. Introducing phenyl groups into the silafluorene ring at the 1- and 3-positions led to a red shift in the emission, resulting in blue light emitting compounds (λ<sub>max</sub> 368–375 nm in solution; λ<sub>max</sub> 362–371 and 482 nm in the solid state), and improved the quantum yield efficiency both in solution and as solids. Aggregation enhanced emission of the silafluorenes (AEE) was also investigated. Theoretical MO calculations were carried out to aid in understanding the optical properties of these molecules. Since these compounds might be useful in bioimaging, their toxicity was also investigated in skin fibroblast cells. All compounds were found to be nontoxic to the investigated cell cultures.