Mesoporous thin films of `molecular squares' as sensors for volatile organic compounds

Melinda H. Keefe, Robert V. Slone, Joseph T. Hupp, Kenneth F. Czaplewski, Randall Q. Snurr, Charlotte L. Stern

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

90 Scopus citations


Mesoporous thin films of rhenium-based `molecular squares', [Re(CO)3Cl(L)]4 (L = pyrazine, 4,4′-bipyridine), have been utilized as sensors for volatile organic compounds (VOCs). The sensing was conducted using a quartz crystal microbalance with the target compounds present in the gas phase at concentrations ranging from 0.05 to 1 mM. Quartz crystal microbalance studies with these materials allowed for distinction between the following VOCs: (1) small aromatic versus aliphatic molecules of almost identical size and volatility and (2) an array of benzene molecules derivatized with electron donating/withdrawing substituents. The experiments suggest that the mesoporous host materials interact with VOC guest molecules through both van der Waals and weak charge-transfer interactions. In addition, size selectivity is shown by exposure of the molecular squares to cyclic ethers of differing size.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)3964-3970
Number of pages7
Issue number8
StatePublished - Apr 18 2000

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Materials Science
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Surfaces and Interfaces
  • Spectroscopy
  • Electrochemistry


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