Liquid state self-assembly could have numerous technological applications. Liquid organic frameworks (LOFs) consist of liquid crystals and are structurally similar to solid-state metal–organic frameworks (MOFs) or covalent organic frameworks (COFs).
Feng Liu, Xi’an Jiaotong University, China, Carsten Tschierske, Martin Luther University Halle-Wittenberg, Halle/Saale, Germany, and colleagues have found the first body‐centered cubic liquid crystalline phase with an 8-connected network topology and an open octahedral network structure. The network is formed by star-shaped molecules composed of a rod-like π-conjugated oligo(phenylene ethynylene) core (pictured in green), “sticky” end groups that can form hydrogen bonds (glycerols, pictured in blue), and branched flexible side chains (pictured in pink). The network’s structure was analyzed using X-ray scattering techniques.
Bundles of rod-like molecules form the network, connected by spheres involving glycerol groups at the 8-way junctions, and with the side chains filling the remaining space. This network has the highest net connectivity observed in artificial soft materials so far. Besides increasing the complexity of soft self-assembly, the new structure has potential uses in nanotemplating for photonic devices.
- Liquid Organic Frameworks: A Liquid Crystalline 8‐Connected Network with Body‐Centered Cubic Symmetry,
Changlong Chen, Marco Poppe, Silvio Poppe, Carsten Tschierske, Feng Liu,
Angew. Chem. Int. Ed. 2020.