Combining chemistry with art, a unique gel sculpture derived from a simple organic salt has been created, which exhibits remarkable shape-persistent, free-standing, load-bearing, and self-healing properties.
By using a supramolecular synthon approach, Parthasarathi Dastidar and colleagues, Indian Association for the Cultivation of Science (IACS), Jadavpur, West Bengal, describe an easy access to a new series of supramolecular gelators derived from an easily obtainable organic salts. One such salt, dicyclohexylammonium Boc-glycinate, displayed properties that have been mainly exhibited in clay- and polymer-based gels.
The strength of the gel encouraged the group to attempt to make a sculpture with the gel by pouring the gel into a template of the sculpture (the “mother and child”, pictured), which was stable for several months.
These easily synthesizable materials are expected to be useful in stress-bearing and several other applications.
Image: © Wiley-VCH
- Gel Sculpture: Moldable, Load-Bearing and Self-Healing Non-Polymeric Supramolecular Gel Derived from a Simple Organic Salt,
P. Sahoo, R. Sankolli, H.-Y. Lee, S. R. Raghavan, P. Dastidar,
Chem. Eur. J. 2012.
DOI: 10.1002/chem. 201200986