Physicochemical Properties and Photochemical Reactions in Organic Crystals

Author(s): Elisa Leyva*, Denisse de Loera, Claudia G. Espinosa-González, Saúl Noriega.

Journal Name: Current Organic Chemistry

Volume 23 , Issue 3 , 2019

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Graphical Abstract:


Background: Molecular organic photochemistry is concerned with the description of physical and chemical processes generated upon the absorption of photons by organic molecules. Recently, it has become an important part of many areas of science: chemistry, biology, biochemistry, medicine, biophysics, material science, analytical chemistry, among others. Many synthetic chemists are using photochemical reactions in crystals to generate different types of organic compounds since this methodology represents a green chemistry approach.

Objective & Method: Chemical reactions in crystals are quite different from reactions in solution. The range of organic solid state reactions and the degree of control which could be achieved under these conditions are quite wider and subtle. Therefore, for a large number of molecular crystals, the photochemical outcome is not the expected product based on topochemical principles. To explain these experimental results, several physicochemical factors in crystal structure have been proposed such as defects, reaction cavity, dynamic preformation or photoinduced lattice instability and steric compression control. In addition, several crystal engineering strategies have been developed to bring molecules into adequate orientations with reactive groups in good proximity to synthesize complex molecules that in many cases are not available by conventional methods. Some strategies involve structural modifications like intramolecular substitution with different functional groups to modify intermolecular interactions. Other strategies involve chemical techniques such as mixed crystal formation, charge transfer complexes, ionic and organometallic interactions. Furthermore, some examples of the single crystal to single crystal transformations have also been developed showing an elegant method to achieve regio and stereoselectivity in a photochemical reaction.

Conclusion: The several examples given in this review paper have shown the wide scope of photochemical reactions in organic molecular crystals. There are several advantages of carrying photochemical reaction in the solid state. Production of materials unobtainable by the traditional solution phase reactions, improved specificity, reduction of impurities, and enhancement in the yields by the reduction of side reactions. These advantages and the multidisciplinary nature of solid-state photochemistry make this discipline quite likely to develop a lot in the future.

Keywords: Photochemistry, solid state, organic crystals, crystalline structure, crystal engineering, physicochemical properties.

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Year: 2019
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DOI: 10.2174/1385272822666190313152105
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