Lanthanides Light Up

  • Author: (Picture: Ⓒ Tara Fadenrecht/MIT)
  • Published: 07 September 2015
  • Copyright: Wiley-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim
  • Source / Publisher: Journal of the American Chemical Society/ACS Publications
  • Associated Societies: American Chemical Society (ACS), USA
thumbnail image: Lanthanides Light Up

Niels Holten-Andersen, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Cambridge, USA, and colleagues have developed a light-emitting lanthanide metallogel with tunable colors whose emission is highly dependent on external stimuli. The researchers used polyethylene glycol (PEG), functionalized with terpyridyl ligands which coordinate lathanide ions (namely, Eu3+ and Tb3+).

Changing the ratio of europium to terbium allowed the team to modulate the color emitted under UV irradiation, including even white light. The bonds between the lanthanides and the ligand are dynamic and react to a wide range of stimuli. The researchers were able to effect color changes in the white-emissive gel with chemicals such as trifluoroacetic acid (TFA), with mechanical stress in an ultrasound bath, and with temperature changes.

The material can be used as a thin film coating and can indicate environmental conditions in solvents or the gas phase, opening up a wide range of potential practical uses, e.g., detecting pollutants, toxins, or pathogens, mechanical stress, and temperature.


Article Views: 3124

Sign in Area

Please sign in below

Additional Sign In options

Please note that to comment on an article you must be registered and logged in.
Registration is for free, you may already be registered to receive, e.g., the newsletter. When you register on this website, please ensure you view our terms and conditions. All comments are subject to moderation.

Article Comments - To add a comment please sign in

Bookmark and Share

If you would like to reuse any content, in print or online, from, please contact us first for permission. more

CONNECT: on Facebook on Twitter on YouTube on LinkedIn Sign up for our free newsletter

Magazine of Chemistry Europe (16 European Chemical Societies)published by Wiley-VCH