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  • Aligned 1-D Nanorods of a π-Gelator Exhibit Molecular Orientation and Excitation Energy Transport Different from Entangled Fiber Networks

Aligned 1-D Nanorods of a π-Gelator Exhibit Molecular Orientation and Excitation Energy Transport Different from Entangled Fiber Networks

Linear π-gelators self-assemble into entangled fibers in which the molecules are arranged perpendicular to the fiber long axis. However, orientation of gelator molecules in a direction parallel to the long axes of the one-dimensional (1-D) structures remains challenging. Herein we demonstrate that, at the air–water interface, an oligo(p-phenylenevinylene)-derived π-gelator forms aligned nanorods of 340 ± 120 nm length and 34 ± 5 nm width, in which the gelator molecules are reoriented parallel to the long axis of the rods. The orientation change of the molecules results in distinct excited-state properties upon local photoexcitation, as evidenced by near-field scanning optical microscopy. A detailed understanding of the mechanism by which excitation energy migrates through these 1-D molecular assemblies might help in the design of supramolecular structures with improved charge-transport properties. J. Am. Chem. Soc., 2014, 136 , 8548–8551