A new photoactive monoclinic polymorph (γ-form) of 6-(2′,4′-dinitrobenzyl)-2,2′-bipyridine was obtained from an acetone-methanol solution. The crystal structure was compared with those of two polymorphs reported previously (photoactive orthorhombic α-form and photoinactive monoclinic β-form) and with structures of related nitrobenzylpyridines to explain the relation between the structure and photochromism. The comparison of the reaction cavities around the reactive pyridyl-benzyl-nitro fragment among the polymorphs and related nitrobenzylpyridines revealed that a crucial factor for photochromic activity is the rotational freedom of the ortho-nitro group in their crystals and its accessibility from the proton-donor and proton-acceptor sites. This is because the ortho-nitro group should rotate around the N-C bond to transfer a proton from the methylene group to the N atom of the pyridine ring.
|Original language||English (US)|
|Number of pages||7|
|Journal||Acta Crystallographica Section B: Structural Science|
|State||Published - Jun 2004|
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)