Photoisomerization Efficiency of a Solar Thermal Fuel in the Strong Coupling Regime
Journal article, 2021

Strong exciton-photon coupling is achieved when the interaction between molecules and an electromagnetic field is increased to a level where they cannot be treated as separate systems. This leads to the formation of polaritonic states and an effective rearrangement of the potential energy surfaces, which opens the possibility to modify photochemical reactions. This work investigates how the strong coupling regime is affecting the photoisomerization efficiency and thermal backconversion of a norbornadiene–quadricyclane molecular photoswitch. The quantum yield of photoisomerization shows both an excitation wavelength and exciton/photon constitution dependence. The polariton-induced decay and energy transfer processes are discussed to be the reason for this finding. Furthermore, the thermal back conversion of the system is unperturbed and the lower polariton effectively shifts the absorption onset to lower energies. The reason for the unperturbed thermal backconversion is that it occurs on the ground state, which is unaffected. This work demonstrates how strong coupling can change material properties towards higher efficiencies in applications. Importantly, the experiments illustrate that strong coupling can be used to optimize the absorption onset of the molecular photoswitch norbonadiene without affecting the back reaction from the uncoupled quadricyclane.

energy storage

solar fuels

polaritonic chemistry

potential energy surfaces

strong coupling

photoisomerization quantum yields



Jürgen Mony

University of Gothenburg

Clàudia Climent

Universidad Autonoma de Madrid (UAM)

Anne Petersen

Chalmers, Chemistry and Chemical Engineering, Applied Chemistry

Kasper Moth-Poulsen

Chalmers, Chemistry and Chemical Engineering, Applied Chemistry

Johannes Feist

Universidad Autonoma de Madrid (UAM)

Karl Börjesson

University of Gothenburg

Advanced Functional Materials

1616-301X (ISSN)

Vol. 31 21 2010737

Subject Categories

Atom and Molecular Physics and Optics

Other Physics Topics

Theoretical Chemistry



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Latest update

4/5/2022 5