Date of Award


Degree Type

Honors College Thesis

Academic Program

Polymer Science and Engineering BS


Polymers and High Performance Materials

First Advisor

Yoan C. Simon, Ph.D.

Second Advisor

Derek L. Patton, Ph.D.

Third Advisor

Sabine Heinhorst, Ph.D.

Advisor Department

Polymers and High Performance Materials


Upconversion is the conversion of light from a longer wavelength to a shorter wavelength. This technique has a wide range of applications in solar technology, bioimaging, drug delivery, and many other fields.1 In this study, a three-part upconverting system was developed including a component termed singlet sink in order to increase upconversion efficiency. The components of this system included Palladium (II) Octaethylporphrin (PdOEP), pyrenebutanol, and 9-phenyl-10-(p-tolylethynyl)-anthracene (PTEA). A procedure was developed in order to create and process films containing these three materials dispersed in a poly(methyl methacrylate) (PMMA) matrix. Upconversion was analyzed in both solution and the solid state through fluorimetry to determine the emission intensity of upconverting systems. It was found that while all systems exhibited a detectable amount of upconversion, systems containing singlet sink exhibited far greater upconversion than equivalent systems without a singlet sink. As a result, the optimal amount of sensitizer, annihilator, and singlet sink were determined to produce bright upconverted emission.

Keywords: upconversion, triplet-triplet annihilation, singlet sink