Spectrochimica acta part a-molecular and biomolecular spectroscopy vol:57 issue:11 pages:2093-2107
Energy transfer in antenna systems, ordered arrays of chromophores, is one of the key steps in the photosynthetic process. The photophysical processes taking place in such multichromophoric systems, even at the single molecule level, are complicated and not yet fully understood. Instead of directly studying individual antenna systems, we have chosen to focus first on systems for which the amount of chromophores and the interactions among the chromophores can be varied in a systematic way. Dendrimers with a controlled number of chromophores. at the rim fulfill those requirements perfectly. A detailed photophysical study of a second-generation dendrimer, containing eight peryleneimide chromophores at the rim, was performed 'J. Am. Chem. Soc., 122 (2000) 9278'. One of the most intriguing findings was the presence of collective on/off jumps in the fluorescence intensity traces of the dendrimers. This phenomenon can be explained by assuming a simultaneous presence of both a radiative trap (energetically lowest chromophoric site) and a non-radiative trap (triplet state of one chromophore) within one individual dendrimer. It was shown that an analogue scheme could explain the collective on/off jumps in the fluorescence intensity traces of the photosynthetic pigment B-phycoerythrin (B-PE) (Porphyridium cruentum). The different values of the triplet lifetime that could be recovered for a fluorescence intensity trace of B-PE were correlated with different intensity levels in the trace, suggesting different chromophores acting as a trap as function of time. (C) 2001 Elsevier Science B.V. All rights reserved.