A Washable MOF

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Science  04 Jan 2013:
Vol. 339, Issue 6115, pp. 12
DOI: 10.1126/science.339.6115.12-c

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Metal organic framework (MOF) materials are highly porous materials that consist of metal atoms linked together with organic ligands. They are useful for capturing, storing, or filtering gases, as well as for catalysis and sensing applications. Most MOF materials are unstable when exposed to water, thus preventing their use as aqueous sieves, where their uniform porosity with pores of just the right size would otherwise be very helpful. Majumder et al. have developed a family of water-stable MOF materials based on either magnesium ions or certain first-row transition metal ions—namely, nickel, cobalt, or manganese—that are linked together with perylene tetracarboxylate (PTC) ligands. The reaction between the potassium salt of PTC and the specific metal acetate was performed in water and could readily be done on multigram scales. The authors noted that if either the acetate or potassium salts were varied, only an amorphous material was obtained. Ni-PTC was able to extract methyl viologen, a known toxic herbicide, from parts per million aqueous solutions. The material also absorbed methylene blue, a dye with a similar hydrodynamic radius, although two larger molecules were clearly excluded from the MOF. Ni-PTC also showed 300:1 selectivity of CO2 versus N2, with a high binding enthalpy for the CO2, suggesting possible uses for gas capture applications.

Chem. Mater. 24, 4647 (2012).

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