Monitoring excimer formation of perylene dye molecules within PMMA-based nanofiber via FLIM method
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Confocal fluorescence lifetime imaging microscopy method is used to obtain individual fluorescence intensity and lifetime values of aromatic Perylene dye molecules encapsulated into PMMA based nanofibers. Fluorescence spectrum of aromatic hydrocarbon dye molecules, like perylene, depends on the concentration of dye molecules and these dye molecules display an excimeric emission band besides monomeric emission bands. Due to the dimension of a nanofiber is comparable to the monomer emission wavelength, the presence of nanofibers does not become effective on the decay rates of a single perylene molecule and its lifetime remains unchanged. When the concentration of perylene increases, molecular motion of the perylene molecule is restricted within nanofibers so that excimer emission arises from the partially overlapped conformation. As compared to free excimer emission of perylene, time-resolved experiments show that the fluorescence lifetime of excimer emission of perylene, which is encapsulated into NFs, gets shortened dramatically. Such a decrease in the lifetime is measured to be almost 50 percent, which indicates that the excimer emission of perylene molecules is more sensitive to change in the surrounding environment due to its longer wavelength. Fluorescence lifetime measurements are typically used to confirm the presence of excimers and to construct an excimer formation map of these dye molecules.