• Probing the Anisotropic Distortion of Photoexcited Spin Crossover Complexes with Picosecond X‑ray Absorption Spectroscopy
    S.E. Canton, X. Zhang, L.M. Lawson Daku, A.L. Smeigh, J. Zhang, Y. Liu, C.-J. Wallentin, K. Attenkofer, G. Jennings, C.A. Kurtz, D. Gosztola, K. Wrnmark, A. Hauser and V. Sundstrm
    Journal of Physical Chemistry C, 118 (8) (2014), p4536-4545
    DOI:10.1021/jp5003963 | unige:37983 | Abstract | Article HTML | Article PDF
 
For numerous spin crossover complexes, the anisotropic distortion of the first coordination shell around the transition metal center governs the dynamics of the high-spin/lowspin interconversion. However, this structural parameter remains elusive for samples that cannot be investigated with crystallography. The present work demonstrates how picosecond X-ray absorption spectroscopy is able to capture this specifi c deformation in the photoinduced high-spin state of solvated [Fe(terpy)2 ]2+ , a complex which belongs to the prominent family of spin crossover building blocks with nonequivalent metal ligand bonds. The correlated changes in FeNAxial , Fe NDistal , and bite angle NDistal Fe NAxial  extracted from the measurements are in very good agreement with those predicted by DFT calculations in D2d  symmetry. The outlined methodology is generally applicable to the characterization of ultrafast nuclear rearrangements around metal centers in photoactive molecular complexes and nanomaterials, including those that do not display long-range order.

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