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4-(2-Methylbutyl)aminodipicolinic acid (H2MEBADPA) has been synthesized and fully characterized in terms of aqueous phase protonation constants (pKa's) and photophysical measurements. The pKa's were determined by spectrophotometric titrations, utilizing a fully sealed titration system. Photophysical measurements consisted of room temperature fluorescence and frozen solution phosphorescence as well as quantum yield determinations at various pH, which showed that only fully deprotonated MEBADPA2– is appreciably emissive. The fluorescence of MEBADPA2– has been determined to be quenched by hydroxide and methoxide anions, most likely through base-catalyzed excited-state tautomerism or proton transfer. This quenching phenomenon has been quantitatively explored through steady-state and time-resolved fluorescence measurements. Utilizing the determined pKas and quenching constants, the fluorescent intensity of MEBADPA2– has been successfully modeled as a function of pH.


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