Examples of electrically conductive metal–organic frameworks (MOFs) are rare, yet they show incredible promise for applications in electrocatalysis, advanced energy storage, and chemical sensing. My research focuses on combining the high conductivity, tunability, and porosity of these MOFs with the solution-processability of liquid crystals.
To do this, we synthesize planar, π–d conjugated macrocycles that are equivalent to a single hexagonal pore in a conductive MOF. By simultaneously tuning the macrocycle’s core and periphery, we hope to stabilize liquid-crystalline phases that preserve the extremely high through-space conductivity (from π-π stacking) whilst introducing fluidity and stimuli-responsiveness.
Advisor: Dianne Xiao – Chemistry