Better Living Through Nanopore Chemistry

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Science  23 Sep 2005:
Vol. 309, Issue 5743, pp. 2008-2009
DOI: 10.1126/science.1117808

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Materials with small holes such as zeolites possess enormous combined surface area for promoting chemical reactions and producing high-value products. But the chemical compositions of zeolites are limited and offer little catalytic benefit for the entire class of important reactants. In their Perspective, Hupp and Poeppelmeier discuss results reported in the same issue by Férey et al. in which the authors have synthesized a highly porous hybrid material based on interlinked organic and inorganic building blocks. The material, designated MIL-101, is crystalline and features a hierarchy of cavity sizes. Exhibiting a surface area about seven times that of the most catalytically effective zeolites, MIL-101 should stimulate a vigorous search for new hybrid nanoporous catalysts.

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