Development of a NIR iridium(III) complex for self-calibrated and luminogenic detection of boron trifluoride

Chuankai Lin, Jing Wang, Kai Yang, Jinbiao Liu*, Dik Lung Ma, Chung Hang Leung*, Wanhe Wang

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articlepeer-review

7 Citations (Scopus)


Boron trifluoride (BF3) is a potential environmental pollutant, and excess exposure to it may cause human diseases. However, the sensitive, rapid and accurate detection of BF3 for on-site purposes is still a challenge. In this work, we developed the first NIR iridium(III)-based probe with dual emission and a Stokes shift of 370 nm for self-calibrated and luminogenic detection of BF3. This probe exhibited a strong luminescence enhancement at around 650 nm to BF3 (0–100 μM) with almost no change in luminescence at 475 nm, displaying a 220-fold I650 nm/I475 nm enhancement at 100 μM of BF3 with a detection limit of 0.35 μM. Moreover, the probe showed a fast response time of less than 5 s to BF3 along with an obvious color change under UV irradiation for visual detection. Importantly, the desirable photophysical properties of the iridium(III)-based probe can be harnessed for time-resolved detection of BF3 in the presence of the fluorescence background. The applicability of the probe was further verified in an organic solvent waste-spiked system and on a glass pane. This work will provide a solid basis for the development of sensitive and on-site BF3 sensing toolkits for environmental monitoring.

Original languageEnglish
Article number121658
JournalSpectrochimica Acta - Part A: Molecular and Biomolecular Spectroscopy
Early online date25 Jul 2022
Publication statusPublished - 5 Dec 2022

Scopus Subject Areas

  • Analytical Chemistry
  • Atomic and Molecular Physics, and Optics
  • Instrumentation
  • Spectroscopy

User-Defined Keywords

  • Large Stokes shift
  • Luminogenic probe
  • Naked-eye
  • NIR
  • Self-calibrated


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