Photo-isomerization of spiropyran-modified cationic surfactants

Hideki Sakai, Hiroatsu Ebana, Kenichi Sakai, Koji Tsuchiya, Takahiro Ohkubo, Masahiko Abe

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

36 Citations (Scopus)


Photo-induced isomerization of a newly synthesized surfactant, 1′(6-trimethylammoniododecyl)-3, 3-dimethyl-6-nitrospiro-(2H-1-benzopyran-2,2′-indoline) bromide (SP-Me-12), has been characterized on the basis of the UV-vis absorption spectra and the surface tension data. Visible light (λ > 420   nm) incident on the aqueous solution of SP-Me-12 results in the isomerization from the merocyanine (MC) form to the spiropyran (SP) form; this structural change was confirmed by a complete disappearance of a characteristic absorption peak of the MC form. When the surfactant solution is stored in the dark, the isomerized SP form reverts to the original MC form, however, the reverse isomerization rate is observed to be considerably slower than that seen for visible light irradiation (from the MC form to the SP form). A reversible change in the surface tension of the aqueous surfactant solution is observed for the photo-induced isomerization: the surface tension measured below the critical aggregation concentration decreases as a result of the visible light irradiation and it is gradually reversed to the original level during the equilibration in the dark.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1027-1030
Number of pages4
JournalJournal of Colloid And Interface Science
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Dec 15 2007
Externally publishedYes


  • Photo-isomerization
  • Spyropyran
  • Surface tension
  • Surfactant

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Biomaterials
  • Surfaces, Coatings and Films
  • Colloid and Surface Chemistry


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