Multiscale modeling of light-harvesting systems based on rhodamine B aggregates

Fanciullo, Giacomo (2023) Multiscale modeling of light-harvesting systems based on rhodamine B aggregates, [Dissertation thesis], Alma Mater Studiorum Università di Bologna. Dottorato di ricerca in Chimica, 35 Ciclo. DOI 10.48676/unibo/amsdottorato/11046.
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Rhodamine B (RB) has been successfully exploited in the synthesis of light harvesting systems, but since RB is prone to form dimers acting as quenchers for the fluorescence, high energy transfer efficiencies can be reached only when using bulky and hydrophobic counterions acting as spacers between RBs. In this PhD thesis, a multiscale theoretical study aimed at providing insights into the structural, photophysical and optical properties of RB and its aggregates is presented. At the macroscopic level (no atomistic details) a phenomenological model describing the fluorescence decay of RB networks in presence of both quenching from dimers and exciton-exciton annihiliation is presented and analysed, showing that the quenching from dimers affects the decay only at long times, a feature that can be exploited in global fitting analysis to determine relevant chemical and photophysical information. At the mesoscopic level (atomistic details but no electronic structure) the RB aggregation in water in presence of different counterions is studied with molecular dynamics (MD) simulations. A new force field has been parametrized for describing the RB flexibility and the RB-RB interaction driving the dimerization. Simulations correctly predict the RB/counterion aggregation only in presence of bulky and hydrophobic counterion and its ability to prevent the dimerization. Finally, at the microscopic level, DFT calculations are performed to demonstrate the spacing action of bulky counterions, but standard TDDFT calculations are showed to fail in correctly describing the excited states of RB and its dimers. Moreover, also standard procedures proposed in literature for obtaining ad hoc functionals are showed to not work properly. A detailed analysis on the effect of the exact exchange shows that its short-range contribution is the crucial quantity for ameliorating results, and a new functional containing a proper amount of such an exchange is proposed and successfully tested.

Tipologia del documento
Tesi di dottorato
Fanciullo, Giacomo
Dottorato di ricerca
Settore disciplinare
Settore concorsuale
Parole chiave
Rhodamine B, Rhodamine B dimerization, Macroscopic Models for Energy Transfer, Optimally-tuned Range-Separated Hybrid Functionals
Data di discussione
19 Giugno 2023

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