Probing Nuclear Spin Effects on Electronic Spin Coherence via EPR Measurements of Vanadium(IV) Complexes

Michael J. Graham, Matthew D. Krzyaniak, Michael R. Wasielewski, Danna E Freedman*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

37 Scopus citations


Quantum information processing (QIP) has the potential to transform numerous fields from cryptography, to finance, to the simulation of quantum systems. A promising implementation of QIP employs unpaired electronic spins as qubits, the fundamental units of information. Though molecular electronic spins offer many advantages, including chemical tunability and facile addressability, the development of design principles for the synthesis of complexes that exhibit long qubit superposition lifetimes (also known as coherence times, or T2) remains a challenge. As nuclear spins in the local qubit environment are a primary cause of shortened superposition lifetimes, we recently conducted a study which employed a modular spin-free ligand scaffold to place a spin-laden propyl moiety at a series of fixed distances from an S = 1/2 vanadium(IV) ion in a series of vanadyl complexes. We found that, within a radius of 4.0(4)-6.6(6) Å from the metal center, nuclei did not contribute to decoherence. To assess the generality of this important design principle and test its efficacy in a different coordination geometry, we synthesized and investigated three vanadium tris(dithiolene) complexes with the same ligand set employed in our previous study: K2[V(C5H6S4)3] (1), K2[V(C7H6S6)3] (2), and K2[V(C9H6S8)3] (3). We specifically interrogated solutions of these complexes in DMF-d7/toluene-d8 with pulsed electron paramagnetic resonance spectroscopy and electron nuclear double resonance spectroscopy and found that the distance dependence present in the previously synthesized vanadyl complexes holds true in this series. We further examined the coherence properties of the series in a different solvent, MeCN-d3/toluene-d8, and found that an additional property, the charge density of the complex, also affects decoherence across the series. These results highlight a previously unknown design principle for augmenting T2 and open new pathways for the rational synthesis of complexes with long coherence times.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)8106-8113
Number of pages8
JournalInorganic chemistry
Issue number14
StatePublished - Jul 17 2017

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physical and Theoretical Chemistry
  • Inorganic Chemistry


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