Magnetic Control of MOF Crystal Orientation and Alignment

Fei Cheng, Ellis S. Marshall, Adam J. Young, Peter J. Robinson, Jean Sebastien G. Bouillard, Ali M. Adawi, Nicolaas A. Vermeulen, Omar K. Farha, Michael R. Reithofer*, Jia Min Chin

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

21 Scopus citations


Most metal-organic frameworks (MOFs) possess anisotropic properties, the full exploitation of which necessitates a general strategy for the controllable orientation of such MOF crystals. Current methods largely rely upon layer-by-layer MOF epitaxy or tuning of MOF crystal growth on appropriate substrates, yielding MOFs with fixed crystal orientations. Here, the dynamic magnetic alignment of different MOF crystals (NH2-MIL-53(Al) and NU-1000) is shown. The MOFs were magnetized by electrostatic adsorption of iron oxide nanoparticles, dispersed in curable polymer resins (Formlabs 1+ clear resin/ Sylgard 184), magnetically oriented, and fixed by resin curing. The importance of crystal orientation on MOF functionality was demonstrated whereby magnetically aligned NU-1000/Sylgard 184 composite was excited with linearly polarized 405 nm light, affording an anisotropic fluorescence response dependent on the polarization angle of the excitation beam relative to NU-1000 crystal orientation.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)15578-15582
Number of pages5
JournalChemistry - A European Journal
Issue number62
StatePublished - Nov 7 2017


  • anisotropy
  • fluorescence
  • magnetic alignment
  • metal-organic framework
  • polymer composites

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Catalysis
  • Organic Chemistry


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