Photoresponsive crown ethers (3) having an intra-annular azo substituent have been synthesized. These crown ethers have been designed so that the crown-metal interaction can only occur upon photoisomerisation of the intra-annular azo substituent from trans to cis. In thermal cis-to-trans isomerisation, the first-order rate constants (k) were suppressed to 14 - 66% by the addition of Na+ or K+, indicating that an additional free energy of activation (1.0 - 5.0 KJ mol-1) is required to disrupt the favourable crown-metal interactions. From the plots of k vs. [M +] the association constants (Kc) for the cis-forms were estimated to be 104.07 - 104.81 l mol-1, which are comparable with the Kc for regular crown ethers. The spectral study established that the high metal affinity of the cis-forms is due to the co-ordination of one of the azo nitrogens to the metal ion. In two-phase extraction of alkali-metal cations the Ex% values for cis-(3) were always higher than those for trans-(3). In particular, the dramatic photoirradiation effect was observed for Na+: cis-(3) extracts Na+ (8.1-14.1%), whereas trans-(3) extracts no Na+. This system was applied to ion transport across a liquid membrane. As expected, Na+ transport occurred only when the membrane phase was irradiated by u.v. light. The marked difference can be used to control the ion permeability by an on-off light switch.
|Number of pages||8|
|Journal||Journal of the Chemical Society, Perkin Transactions 1|
|Publication status||Published - 1987|
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes