Ligand-field symmetry effects in Fe(II) polypyridyl compounds probed by transient X-ray absorption spectroscopy
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Ligand-field symmetry effects in Fe(II) polypyridyl compounds probed by transient X-ray absorption spectroscopy

Abstract

Ultrafast excited-state evolution in polypyridyl FeII complexes are of fundamental interest for understanding the origins of the sub-ps spin-state changes that occur upon photoexcitation of this class of compounds as well as for the potential impact such ultrafast dynamics have on incorporation of these compounds in solar energy conversion schemes or switchable optical storage technologies. We have demonstrated that ground-state and, more importantly, ultrafast time-resolved x-ray absorption methods can offer unique insights into the interplay between electronic and geometric structure that underpin the photo-induced dynamics of this class of compounds. The present contribution examines in greater detail how the symmetry of the ligand field surrounding the metal ion can be probed using these x-ray techniques. In particular, we show that steady-state K-edge spectroscopy of the nearest-neighbour nitrogen atoms reveals the characteristic chemical environment of the respective ligands and suggests an interesting target for future charge-transfer femtosecond and attosecond spectroscopy in the x-ray water window.

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