The research programme of our group
Our research is devoted to the development of advanced organic materials based on functional dyes such as perylene and naphthalene bisimides, merocyanines, squaraines, chlorins and diketopyrrolopyrroles by employing supramolecular approaches. Towards this objective, we design and synthesize novel molecular building blocks and explore their self-assembly into nanoscale architectures and liquid-crystalline and crystalline solid-state materials that are applied in (opto-)electronic and photovoltaic devices as weil as in photocatalytic water splitting.
Our Current Research Topics:
Mechanistic elucidation, including thermodynamic and kinetic analyses of self-assembly processes of functional dyes by UV/ Vis/NIR absorption, fluorescence and CD spectroscopy and isothermal titration calorimetry. Structural and morphological characterization of supramolecular assemblies by 2D NMR, DLS, high-resolution MS, AFM, STM, SEM and T EM. Exploration of electrochemical and photo-physical properties of supramolecu lar assem blies by cyc lic vo lta m metry, s p ectroelectroch e m istry an d tim e-resolved spectrosco py.
Supramolecular Polymers and Soft Matter
Construction of supramolecular polymers and block copolymers of functional dyes by seeded living polymerization and elucidation of their (opto) electronic properties. Developmentof thermotropic and lyotropic (chromonic) liquid-crystalline and gel materials based on H-bonding perylene bisimides and squaraines. Analysis of condensed phase materials by POM, DSC and XRD techniques
lnteraction with Biomacromolecules
Development of water-soluble fluorescent dyes and their supramolecular assemblies and exploration of their interactions with biological components like DNA, proteins, and cellular systems for sensing, imaging and therapeutic applications.
Synthesis of multichromophoric macrocycles and elucidation of their self-organization on surfaces by e.g. scanning probe microscopy (AFM/STM) as weil as characterization of their host-guest complexation and photophysical properties.
Development of multicomponent architectures containing functional dye based light harvesting antennae systems and photosensitizers as solar fuel production catalysts for the implementation into photo-reactors. Construction of metallosupramolecular architectures like one-dimensional nanofibers or two-dimensional macrocycles containing ruthenium water oxidation catalysts.
Organic Electronics & Photovoltaics
Highly purified functional small molecules can be processed either from solution or by sublimation in vacuum to investigate their propensity as solid state materials for applications in organic thin-film transistors and organic bulk heterojunction solar cells. Structure properties relationships are established by correlation 6gg between single crystal and thin-film X-ray analysis.