NOVEL TECHNIQUES AND FABRICATION METHODS FOR NANOMATERIALS INCLUDING MOFS
The fabrication of free-standing MOF nanomaterials offers enormous benefits including energy and cost savings compared with traditional methods for MOF thin-film fabrication on substrates. In this project, we develop further the printing methodologies required to translate MOFs (including electro-, photo- and catalytically-active materials) into industrially applicable devices. We are also skilled in the design and build of new solid state electrochemical and spectroelectrochemical methods to probe the function in 'real-time' of electro- and photo-active MOFs. A key goal is optimising and improving these methodologies as spectroscopic capabilities are enhanced. We are also interested in the emerging area of dual-spectroelectrochemical methods wherein catalyst function can be investigated at the same time as reactant/product evolution.
3D PRINTING (ADDITIVE MANUFACTURING) OF NANOMATERIALS
The fabrication of free-standing MOF nanomaterials offers enormous benefits including energy and cost savings compared with traditional methods for MOF thin-film fabrication on substrates. In this project, we develop further the printing methodologies required to translate MOFs (including electro-, photo- and catalytically-active materials) into industrially applicable devices. These methods are central to our work in applying MOFs to industry. Our first publications in the area are coming soon!
SOLID STATE ELECTROCHEMICAL TECHNIQUES
We develop new techniques to probe the electroactive properties of MOFs. While solid state DC methods can be useful, the highly capacitive nature of nanomaterials is a significant hurdle that often confounds experimental data. AC electrochemistry, pioneered by our colleague and collaborator Prof. Alan Bond for biological systems such as metalloproteins - is a powerful technique that we are applying for the first time to nanomaterials such as MOFs. Our first publications in this area show the strong promise for these methods for untangling complex electrochemistry.
SOLID STATE SPECTROELECTROCHEMISTRY
In this work, we develop innovative in situ solid state UV-Vis-NIR, EPR Fluorescence and Raman spectroelectrochemical (SEC) techniques for probing the electronic and optical properties of electroactive MOFs and POPs. These techniques are unique in the context of existing research in the area and are significant in now enabling researchers to rapidly screen the spectroscopic properties of redox-active solids which are otherwise not amenable to analysis due to their air or moisture sensitivity. With interest in the electronic and conducting properties of porous materials now exploding worldwide, these simple, yet powerful methods are of good utility for the inorganic and materials chemistry communities. See our recent review on the area of spectroelectrochemistry for nanomaterials including MOFs and our general review on the potential of electroactive MOFs.
CURRENT PROJECTS AVAILABLE
(1) Developing 3D printing methods for electroactive MOFs
(2) Probing mechanisms of electrochemical reactions in MOFs using AC Voltammetry
(3) Development of a solid state Infrared and dual-spectroelectrochemical technique for electrocatalytic MOFs