Bodipy-Containing Porous Microcapsules for Flow Heterogeneous Photocatalysis

Photocatalysis is a facile strategy for complex chemical transformations. Heterogeneous photocatalysis, especially in the flow system, has attracted much attention as it avoids the separation of catalysts. Herein, a kind of a Bodipy-containing porous microcapsule heterogeneous photocatalyst was rationally constructed with modulation on a multiscale. The diiodo-Bodipy with methacrylate (MA-2IBDP) was synthesized as a polymerizable photosensitizer. After immobilization in a polymer matrix, the intersystem crossing rate constant of MA-2IBDP increased to 2.7 × 1010 s–1 and its triplet excited-state lifetime prolonged to ∼1 ms. Porous structures in microcapsules were created to facilitate mass transfer. A flat plate flow reactor was constructed to fix the catalytic microcapsules and improve light utilization. With the combination of all the above benefits, the reaction rate constant (0.896 s–1) is 10 times faster than that of MA-2IBDP in a homogeneous system for juglone synthesis. The continuous production can last for 30 h without yield decrease. The photocatalyst can also be used in aza-Henry reaction, Alder-Ene reaction, and oxidation of thiols to disulfides with conversion rates above 95%. This study provides a means for the construction of heterogeneous catalysts and the flow reaction system.

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