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Photophysical and Electrochemical Characterization of a Helical Viologen, N,N′‑Dimethyl-5,10-diaza[5]helicene

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posted on 05.09.2014, 00:00 by Xiaoping Zhang, Edward L. Clennan, Navamoney Arulsamy
The first helical viologen (4,4′-bipyridinium salt) has been prepared and characterized. Its reduction to the radical cation at −0.22 V vs SCE makes it the most easily reduced redox-active helicene known. It exhibits absorption at 397 nm for the S1 ← S0 transition, and it is luminescent allowing measurement of both its singlet (59.3 ± 0.1 kcal/mol) and triplet (54 ± 1 kcal/mol) energies. In contrast to neutral helicenes, it is not aromatic π-stacked in the crystal and has a shortest interdication distance of 4.977 Å. Its racemization barrier is calculated to be a sensitive function of its redox state.