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  1. Several MOFs are evaluated as adsorbents of anthropogenic N2O emissions, the third most abundant greenhouse gas, through complimentary experimental and DFT analysis. N2O activation in M2(dobdc) MOFs is also studied.

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    Free, publicly-accessible full text available February 28, 2025
  2. Metal–organic frameworks (MOFs) are crystalline materials that self-assemble from inorganic nodes and organic linkers, and isoreticular chemistry allows for modular and synthetic reagents of various sizes. In this study, a MOF’s components—metal nodes and organic linkers—are constructed in a coarse-grained model from isotropic beads, retaining the basic symmetries of the molecular components. Lennard-Jones and Weeks– Chandler–Andersen pair potentials are used to model attractive and repulsive particle interactions, respectively. We analyze the crystallinity of the self-assembled products and explore the role of modulators—molecules that compete with the organic linkers in binding to the metal nodes, and which we construct analogously—during the selfassembly process of defect-engineered MOFs. Coarse-grained simulation allows for the uncoupling of experimentally interdependent variables to broadly map and determine essential MOF self-assembly conditions, among which are properties of the modulator: binding strength, size (steric hindrance), and concentration. Of these, the simulated modulator’s binding strength has the most pronounced effect on the resulting MOF’s crystal size. 
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    Free, publicly-accessible full text available December 12, 2024
  3. Conjugated microporous polymers (CMPs) are porous organic materials that display (semi)conducting behavior due to their highly π-conjugated structures, making them promising next-generation materials for applications requiring both electrical conductivity and porosity. Currently, most CMPs and related porous aromatic frameworks (PAFs) are prepared using expensive transition metals (e.g., Pd), significantly increasing the costs associated with their synthesis. Lewis acid-mediated cyclotrimerization reactions of methyl ketones and nitriles represent promising and green alternative methods for CMP and PAF synthesis. Herein, we demonstrate that the generality of the solvent-free cyclotrimerization reactions is significantly improved by using ZnBr2 instead of ZnCl2 as the ionothermal medium. Specifically, we show that 1,4-diacetylbenzene (DAB), 4,4′-diacetylbiphenyl (DABP), 2,7-diacetylfluorene (DAF), 1,3,5-triacetylbenzene (TAB), tetrakis(4-acetylphenyl)methane (TAPM), and 1,4-dicyanobenzene (DCNB) can be polymerized in molten ZnBr2 to produce highly conjugated and microporous materials, as confirmed by 77 K N2 adsorption measurements, IR, and solid-state NMR. These findings support that ZnBr2 is an excellent Lewis acid mediator and medium for the ionothermal synthesis of porous organic materials. 
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    Free, publicly-accessible full text available August 17, 2024
  4. Metal–organic frameworks bearing coordinatively unsaturated Mg( ii ) sites are promising materials for gas storage, chemical separations, and drug delivery due to their low molecular weights and lack of toxicity. However, there remains a limited number of such MOFs reported in the literature. Herein, we investigate the gas sorption properties of the understudied framework Mg 2 ( m -dobdc) (dobdc 4− = 4,6-dioxido-1,3-benzenedicarboxylate) synthesized under both solvothermal and mechanochemical conditions. Both materials are found to be permanently porous, as confirmed by 77 K N 2 adsorption measurements. In particular, Mg 2 ( m -dobdc) synthesized under mechanochemical conditions using exogenous organic base displays one of the highest capacities reported to date (6.14 mmol g −1 ) for CO 2 capture in a porous solid under simulated coal flue gas conditions (150 mbar, 40 °C). As such, mechanochemically synthesized Mg 2 ( m -dobdc) represents a promising new framework for applications requiring high gas adsorption capacities in a porous solid. 
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  5. Organic electrode materials offer unique opportunities to utilize ion-electrode interactions to develop diverse, versatile, and high-performing secondary batteries, particularly for applications requiring high power densities. However, a lack of well-defined structure–property relationships for redox-active organic materials restricts the advancement of the field. Herein, we investigate a family of diimide-based polymer materials with several charge-compensating ions (Li + , Na + , K + ) in order to systematically probe how redox-active moiety, ion, and polymer flexibility dictate their thermodynamic and kinetic properties. When favorable ion-electrode interactions are employed ( e.g. , soft K + anions with soft perylenediimide dianions), the resulting batteries demonstrate increased working potentials and improved cycling stabilities. Further, for all polymers examined herein, we demonstrate that K + accesses the highest percentage of redox-active groups due to its small solvation shell/energy. Through crown ether experiments, cyclic voltammetry, and activation energy measurements, we provide insights into the charge compensation mechanisms of three different polymer structures and rationalize these findings in terms of the differing degrees of improvements observed when cycling with K + . Critically, we find that the most flexible polymer enables access to the highest fraction of active sites due to the small activation energy barrier during charge/discharge. These results suggest that improved capacities may be accessible by employing more flexible structures. Overall, our in-depth structure–activity investigation demonstrates how variables such as polymer structure and cation can be used to optimize battery performance and enable the realization of novel battery chemistries. 
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  6. Abstract

    Single‐electron transfer (SET) plays a critical role in many chemical processes, from organic synthesis to environmental remediation. However, the selective reduction of inert substrates (Ep/2<−2 V vs Fc/Fc+), such as ubiquitous electron‐neutral and electron‐rich (hetero)aryl chlorides, remains a major challenge. Current approaches largely rely on catalyst photoexcitation to reach the necessary deeply reducing potentials or suffer from limited substrate scopes. Herein, we demonstrate that cumulenes–organic molecules with multiple consecutive double bonds–can function as catalytic redox mediators for the electroreductive radical borylation of (hetero)aryl chlorides at relatively mild cathodic potentials (approximately −1.9 V vs. Ag/AgCl) without the need for photoirradiation. Electrochemical, spectroscopic, and computational studies support that step‐wise electron transfer from reduced cumulenes to electron‐neutral chloroarenes is followed by thermodynamically favorable mesolytic cleavage of the aryl radical anion to generate the desired aryl radical intermediate. Our findings will guide the development of other sustainable, purely electroreductive radical transformations of inert molecules using organic redox mediators.

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