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submitted on 25.09.2019 and posted on 27.09.2019by Jun Zhang, Haoke Zhang, Junkai Liu, Jacky W. Y. Lam, Ben Zhong Tang
motion plays a vital role in many advanced technologies. However, visualization
of these processes is still challenging due to the limitation of characterization
method. In this work, a common structural determination technique, single-crystal
X-ray diffraction, is applied to “see” the static and dynamic molecular motions
in tetraphenylethylene (TPE) which exhibits aggregation-induce emission (AIE)
effect. Five kinds of motions, stretching, torsion, twisting, rocking, and wagging
are observed and analyzed. As the static molecular motions, the middle double
bond in TPE becomes short and twisted and the peripheral phenyl rings as a
whole tend to be more twisted with the raising of testing temperature (150 to
298 K). Meanwhile, dynamic motions of phenyl-rings rocking and wagging are
found to be more and more vigorous along with the increase of temperature. This
work provides a platform for visualizing solid-state molecular motion based on
a common technique. It also affords direct evidence for the AIE mechanism of
restriction of intramolecular motions.