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Open Access Publications from the University of California

Supramolecular architectures of molecularly thin yet robust free-standing layers.

  • Author(s): Moradi, Mina;
  • Opara, Nadia L;
  • Tulli, Ludovico G;
  • Wäckerlin, Christian;
  • Dalgarno, Scott J;
  • Teat, Simon J;
  • Baljozovic, Milos;
  • Popova, Olha;
  • van Genderen, Eric;
  • Kleibert, Armin;
  • Stahlberg, Henning;
  • Abrahams, Jan Pieter;
  • Padeste, Celestino;
  • Corvini, Philippe F-X;
  • Jung, Thomas A;
  • Shahgaldian, Patrick
  • et al.

Stable, single-nanometer thin, and free-standing two-dimensional layers with controlled molecular architectures are desired for several applications ranging from (opto-)electronic devices to nanoparticle and single-biomolecule characterization. It is, however, challenging to construct these stable single molecular layers via self-assembly, as the cohesion of those systems is ensured only by in-plane bonds. We herein demonstrate that relatively weak noncovalent bonds of limited directionality such as dipole-dipole (-CN⋅⋅⋅NC-) interactions act in a synergistic fashion to stabilize crystalline monomolecular layers of tetrafunctional calixarenes. The monolayers produced, demonstrated to be free-standing, display a well-defined atomic structure on the single-nanometer scale and are robust under a wide range of conditions including photon and electron radiation. This work opens up new avenues for the fabrication of robust, single-component, and free-standing layers via bottom-up self-assembly.

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