The apparent diffusion coefficients of tris(2,2′-bipyridyl)ruthenium ([Ru(bpy3)]2+) are estimated in silica-nanochannels which are assembled inside columnar alumina pores in an anodic alumina membrane, and are modified with alkylsilanes such as trimethylchlorosilane (C1), butyldimethylchlorosilane (C4), and dodecyldimethylchlorosilane (C12). The estimation is performed by observing the lag-time, which is defined as the time required for [Ru(bpy)3]2+ to diffuse through alkylsilane-modified silica-nanochannels in the alumina membrane. When ethanol is used as a solvent, the apparent diffusion coefficients of [Ru(bpy)3]2+ are estimated as 2.1 × 10-10 and 3.2 × 10-10 cm2 s-1 in the C1- and C4-modified silica-nanochannels, respectively. These values are about 104 times smaller than that obtained in bulk ethanol. Based on the experimental results on the solvent dependency of the lag-time, the hydrogen-bonding interaction between ethanol molecules is considered to be stronger in the C1- and C4-modified silica-nanochannels than in bulk ethanol, and the hydrogen-bonding interaction plays a critical role for the slow diffusivity in those nanochannels. In contrast, the apparent diffusion coefficient in the C12-modified silica-nanochannel is at least two orders of magnitude larger than those in the C1- and C4-modified silica-nanochannels. This relatively fast diffusion is most likely explained by the presence of a long alkyl chain of C12, which reduces a hindrance effect that is originates in the hydrogen-bonding interaction.
2006 by The Japan Society for Analytical Chemistry