New Synthesis of Porous Solids
Porous and layered solids have many uses in industry. These include many different types of catalysis, ion exchange (e.g. water softeners in washing powder) and gas adsorption. Recently we have developed a new way of making these materials, called ionothermal synthesis, where we use the interesting properties of solvents called ionic liquids to prepare new types of solid that may prove to have important properties. For more information see reference 1 and 2.
Right: A new zeolite (SIZ-7)made using the ionothermal method
New Applications of Porous Solids
Nitric oxide is an amazing molecule, with many potential applications in medicine and biology. Unfortunately as a gas it is difficult to deliver in the right amounts. We are developing new zeolites and metal organic frameworks that can be used to store nitric oxide and deliver it to the correct bit of the body in the correct dosage. We then show, in collaboration with biologists and medics, the action of the nitric oxide on the body (See reference 2 for examples)
X-Ray Diffraction and Solid State NMR
We are using very powerful synchrotron X-rays to solve the structures of solids using very small crystals (down to 0.01mm × 0.01 mm × 0.01mm). We are also using solid state NMR to probe structures. Recently we have published the first example of a structure solution of a zeolite from NMR data alone and we combine NMR and X-ray diffraction data to get much better structural models for porous solids than any technique can provide on its own. (See reference 3 for example)
SELECTED RECENT PUBLICATIONS
School of Chemistry, University of St Andrews, North Haugh, St Andrews, Scotland KY16 9ST.
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