skip to main content

Title: Use of Solvatochromism to Assay Preferential Solvation of a Prototypic Catalytic Site

The composition of the reaction medium near photoactive catalytic sites can be inferred from the solvatochromism of the absorption and emission spectra of the wetted sites, which depend on the polarizability of the fluid. In brief, solvatochromism measures the interaction of the dipole moments of the ground and excited states with the electric field imposed by the solvent shell: a field, which does not relax on the time scale of the absorption or emission events. As a first step in establishing the utility of the technique for inorganic catalysts that operate in complex reaction media, such as encountered in the upgrading of biogenic fuels, we have measured the solvatochromism of a common, structural feature of metal oxide catalysts. In toluene, cyclohexene, chloroform and tetrahydrofuran, POSS-ligated oxometalates exhibit strong ligand-to-metal charge-transfer bands in their UV-visible absorption and emission spectra. The magnitudes of the solvatochromic effects agreed well with the calculated changes in dipole moments that accompany the electronic transitions. From the solvatochromism of the chromophores dissolved in toluene-chloroform mixtures we inferred an unexpectedly strong, preferential solvation of the chromophore even when all three components (oxometalate and the two solvents) were highly miscible. This research was supported in part by the Laboratorymore » Directed Research & Development program at Pacific Northwest National Laboratory. PNNL is operated by Battelle for the US Department of Energy under contract DE-AC05-76RL01830. A portion of the research was performed at EMSL, a national scientific user facility sponsored by the Department of Energy's Office of Biological and Environmental Research and located at PNNL.« less
; ; ; ; ;
Publication Date:
OSTI Identifier:
Report Number(s):
DOE Contract Number:
Resource Type:
Journal Article
Resource Relation:
Journal Name: Topics in Catalysis, 58(4-6):258-270
Research Org:
Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL), Richland, WA (US), Environmental Molecular Sciences Laboratory (EMSL)
Sponsoring Org:
Country of Publication:
United States
luminescence spectroscopy vanadium; chromium; molybdenum; tungsten oxides; TD-DFT; ligand-to-metal charge transfer spectroscopy; mesoscale measurements; Environmental Molecular Sciences Laboratory