Efficient Room-Temperature Phosphorescence of Covalent Organic Frameworks through Covalent Halogen Doping



Organic room-temperature phosphorescence, a spin-forbidden radiative process, has emerged as an interesting but rare phenomenon with multiple potential applications in optoelectronic devices, biosensing, and anticounterfeiting. Covalent organic frameworks (COFs) with accessible nanoscale porosity and precisely engineered topology can offer unique benefits in the design of phosphorescent materials, which are presently unexplored. Here, we report an original approach of covalent doping, whereby a bi-component COF is synthesized by copolymerization of halogenated and unsubstituted phenyldiboronic acids, allowing for random distribution of functionalized units at varying ratios, yielding highly phosphorescent COFs. Such controlled halogen doping enhances the intersystem crossing while minimizing the triplet-triplet annihilation by diluting the phosphors. The rigidity of the COF suppresses vibrational relaxation and allows high phosphorescence quantum yield (Φ(phos) <29%) at room-temperature. The permanent porosity of the COFs and the combination of the singlet and triplet emitting channels enable a highly efficient COF-based oxygen sensor, with an ultra-wide dynamic detection range, ~ 10^3…10^-5 torr of partial oxygen pressure.


Supplementary material

Supplementary Information
Additional descriptions of experimental and computational methods are provided in the SI