Date of Graduation

Fall 2011


Master of Science in Chemistry


Chemistry and Biochemistry

Committee Chair

Mark Richter


The photoluminescence, electrochemistry, and electrogenerated chemiluminescence (ECL) of several families of compounds have been studied. ECL involves the generation of light from chemicals in solution using electricity. Osmium carbonyl chloride systems, metal-bisalicylideneethylenediamino (salen) systems, ruthenium complexes as well as ionic liquids listed were studied for their potential applications as ECL luminophores. Osmium carbonyl chloride complexes containing phenanthroline and/or phosphine ligands exhibit electrochemiluminescence in acetonitrile solutions. Although photoluminescence (PL) efficiencies are in general higher than a [Ru(bpy)3]2+ standard, the ECL emission efficiencies are weaker, showing the sensitive nature of transition metal excited states to the nature of both the ligands and solvent, indicating that tuning of the excited state and emission efficiencies are possible. Of the metal-salen complexes, PL efficiencies ranged between 0.0310 and 23.8 compared to standard, with ECL efficiencies overall lower than standard. Qualitative studies indicate the same excited species in formed in PL and ECL studies on the metal-salen compounds. The presence of ionic liquid [emim][EtSO4] appears to aid in the adsorption of luminophores and coreactant near the surface of the electrode (i.e., the preconcentration of reactants at or near the electrode surface), yielding 5 – 27-fold increases in ECL intensity.


electrogenerated chemiluminescence, coreactant, photoluminescence, ionic liquids, metal complexes

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© Megan Jean Schnuriger

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