Marie Skłodowska-Curie Actions

Marie Skłodowska-Curie Actions - Individual Fellowships (IF). Switchable NanoMaterials Research Group

    31/07/2018 17:00 - Europe/Brussels
    H2020 / Marie Skłodowska-Curie Actions
    Spain, Madrid
    Fundación IMDEA Nanociencia

The Switchable NanoMaterials group (SNM) from IMDEA Nanociencia is focused on the development of metal-based coordination complexes at the macro- and nanoscopic scale for their technological application in the fields of quantum computing, energy storage, spintronic and sensing devices. Our multidisciplinary approach is based on three major themes:

1) Iron-based Spin Crossover (SCO) Switchable coordination complexes: The SCO phenomena remain one of the most spectacular forms of a switchable material (https://doi.org/10.1016/j.crci.2018.04.004). At the SNM we are using these materials as pillars for the synthesis of smart gasses and small volatile organic compounds (VOCs) sensors.

2) Functional Metal-Organic Frameworks, MOFs: MOFs are extended molecular materials formed by metal ions bridged by ligands, thus creating voids to absorb guest molecules. We are interested on increasing the selectivity of the MOF through tuning the shape and size of the pores and/or through the inclusion of specific receptors (Chem. Commun., 2018, Advance Article, 10.1039/C8CC01561A).

3) Non-porous architectures acting as porous compounds: In contrast to MOFs, while 1D and 0D discrete compounds are non-porous by nature, in some cases they can behave as porous materials and absorb guest molecules. Recently some of us have demonstrated the potential use of low dimension materials constructed using SCO as metal centres (JACS, 2014, 10.1039/C8CC01561A). This remarkable result led us to consider the great potential that these structures have for the development of advanced sensors.

Project Description:

We propose a ground-breaking approach to assemble unprecedented hybrid switchable architectures in a controlled and modular manner allowing the inclusion and fine-tuning of a wide range of specific functionalities in each of its components. This will provide new concept materials with the required performances for their industrial and technological deployment.

Specifically, we will focus on the development of a simple, low-cost, robust, exceptionally sensitive and selective single-molecule gas sensing device able to work at room temperature. To this aim 0D, 1D and 3D coordination complexes formed by spin crossover metal centres (providing great sensitivity through signal transduction) and modified organic ligands (providing exceptional selectivity through the introduction of unique and tailored receptors) will be first synthetized at the macroscopic scale.

Nano and atomic scale electronic devices will then be created by covalently “sandwiching” these composites between graphene electrodes allowing an easily detectable conductance signal. In such a way, the traditionally separated chemistry and electronic devices research fields will be combined providing an unusual and complementary angle to guide the design and understanding of functional molecular electronic components. This will serve as inspiration for opening new research avenues and unexpected applications.

As a proof of concept, the results of this multidisciplinary proposal will overcome the key limitations identified in the detection, storage and selective separation of gases and VOCs. This will change the status quo and will lead to advances in multiple priority issues confronting our society.

Candidates are invited to submit their Expression of Interest directly to Dr. Jose Sanchez Costa (jose.sanchezcosta@imdea.org) with subject MSCA-IF 2018 by the 31th of July 2018. The Expression of Interest should include a complete and updated CV with a brief description of the previous research and a motivation letter in ONE PDF file only.