A turn-on fluorescence probe for the selective and sensitive detection of fluoride ions.
Two Bodipy derivatives with silyl-protected phenolic functionalities signal fluoride concentrations both in solution and in a poly(methyl methacrylate) matrix. The exact location of the "nascent" phenolate group is important. If it is at the meso position, photoinduced electron transfer is triggered; however, if it is in full conjugation via a styryl moiety to the Bodipy core, strong intramolecular charge transfer is triggered, resulting in a large red shift in the absorbance peak. In either case, a selective methodology for fluoride sensing is the invariable result.