Lin, Chenyu; Sai Krishna Katla and Juan Perez-Mercader

In this communication, we report some results on the use of rhodamine 6G (R6G), a well-known laser dye, as a versatile photocatalyst for water-based photoinduced electron transfer reversible addition-fragmentation chain transfer (PET-RAFT) polymerization. Our results show higher monomer conversions and greater R6G fluorescence emission. The R6G dye exhibited efficient photocatalytic behavior for the RAFT-polymerization in water forming polymeric objects (such as micelles and vesicles) through polymerization induced self-assembly (PISA). To achieve these results, we used a compounded feedback that we found takes place among the photoactive R6G molecules, their hydrophobicity and the self-assembly of the synthesized amphiphiles into progressively more complex self-assembled structures during the PET-PISA process. This polymeric system shows the existence of an interesting supramolecular relationship between the R6G molecules, its fluorescence emission and its function as a PET photocatalyst.