Room-temperature phosphorescence (RTP) emitters have attracted significant attention. However, purely organic RTP emitters in red to near-infrared region have not been properly investigated. In this study, a series of naphthalenediimide−halobenzoate-linked molecules are synthesized, one of which exhibits efficient RTP properties, showing red to near-infrared emission in solid and aqueous dispersion. Spectroscopic studies and single-crystal X-ray diffraction analysis have shown that the difference in the stacking modes of compounds affects the optical properties, and the formation of intermolecular charge-transfer complexes of naphthalenediimide−halobenzoate moiety results in a bathochromic shift of absorption and RTP properties. The time-dependent density functional theory calculations showed that the formation of charge-transfer triplet states and the external heavy atom effect of the halogen atom enhance the intersystem crossing between excited singlet and triplet states.
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