Trapping virtual pores by crystal retro-engineering

Little, Marc, Briggs, Michael ORCID: 0000-0003-1474-1267, Jones, James, Schmidtmann, Marc, Hasell, Tom ORCID: 0000-0003-4736-0604, Chong, Sam ORCID: 0000-0002-3095-875X, Jelfs, Kim, Chen, Linjiang and Cooper, Andy ORCID: 0000-0003-0201-1021
(2015) Trapping virtual pores by crystal retro-engineering. Nature Chemistry, 7 (02). pp. 153-159.

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Stable guest-free porous molecular crystals are uncommon. By contrast, organic molecular crystals with guest-occupied cavities are frequently observed, but these cavities tend to be unstable and collapse on removal of the guests—this feature has been referred to as ‘virtual porosity’. Here, we show how we have trapped the virtual porosity in an unstable low-density organic molecular crystal by introducing a second molecule that matches the size and shape of the unstable voids. We call this strategy ‘retro-engineering’ because it parallels organic retrosynthetic analysis, and it allows the metastable two-dimensional hexagonal pore structure in an organic solvate to be trapped in a binary cocrystal. Unlike the crystal with virtual porosity, the cocrystal material remains single crystalline and porous after removal of guests by heating.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: Porous crystals, molecular crystals, porous materials, crystal engineering
Depositing User: Symplectic Admin
Date Deposited: 11 May 2016 13:34
Last Modified: 19 Jan 2023 07:36
DOI: 10.1038/nchem.2156
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