Picosescond fluorescence lifetime standards for frequency- and time-domain fluorescence

Joseph R. Lakowicz, Ignacy Gryczynski, Gabor Laczko, Dieter Gloyna

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

23 Scopus citations


We characterized a series of dimethylamino-stilbene derivatives as standards for time-domain and frequency-domain lifetime measurements. The substances have reasonable quantum yields, are soluble in solvents available with a high purity, and do not show significant sensitivity to oxygen quenching. All the fluorophores displayed single exponential intensity decays, as characterized by frequency-domain measurements to 10 GHz. The decay times vary from 880 to 57 ps, depending on structure, solvent, and temperature, which is a useful range for modern picosecond time-domain or gigahertz frequency-domain instruments. These fluorophores may be used either to test an instrument or as reference compounds to eliminate color effects. We also characterized two-fluorophore mixtures, with the decay times spaced twofold (150 and 300 ps), with varying proportions. These mixtures are useful for testing the resolution of other time- and frequency-domain instrumentation. The excitation wavelength ranges from 260 to 430 nm, and the emission from 350 to 550 nm. The decay times are independent of the excitation and emission wavelengths.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)87-93
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Fluorescence
Issue number2
StatePublished - Jun 1991


  • 4,4′-substituted stilbenes
  • Fluorescence spectroscopy
  • frequency-domain fluorescence
  • lifetime
  • time-domain fluorescence
  • time-resolved fluorescence


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