Establishing dual electrogenerated chemiluminescence and multi-color electrochromism in functional ionic transition metal complexes

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Egle Puodziukynaite|Justin Oberst|Aubrey L Dyer|John Reynolds
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Journal Article, Professional Journal
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A combination of electrochromism and electroluminescence in functional materials could lead to single-layer dual electrochromic/electroluminescent (EC/EL) display devices, capable of simultaneous operation in emissive and reflective modes. Whereas such next generation displays could provide optimal visibility in any ambient lighting situation, materials available that exhibit such characteristics in the active layer are limited due to the required intrinsic multifunctionality (i.e., redox activity, electroluminescence, electrochromism, and ion conductivity) and to date can only be achieved via the rational design of ionic transition-metal complexes. Reported herein is the synthesis and characterization of a new family of acrylate-containing ruthenium (tris)bipyridine-based coordination complexes with multifunctional characteristics. Potential use of the presented compounds in EC/EL devices is established, as they are applied as cross-linked electrochromic films and electrochemiluminescent layers in light-emitting electrochemical cell devices. Electrochromic switching of the polymeric networks between yellow, orange, green, brown and transmissive states is demonstrated, and electrochemiluminescent devices based on the complexes synthesized show red-orange to deep red emission with λmax ranging from 680 to 722 nm and luminance up to 135 cd/m2. Additionally, a dual EC/EL device prototype is presented where light emission and multicolor electrochromism occur from the same pixel comprised of a single active layer, demonstrating a true combination of these properties in ionic transition-metal complexes.
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