Redox chemistry and metal–insulator transitions intertwined in a nano-porous material
Metal-organic frameworks are nano-porous adsorbents of relevance to gas separation and catalysis, and separation of oxygen from air is essential to diverse industrial applications. The ferrous salt of 2,5-dihydroxy-terephthalic acid, a metal-organic framework of the MOF74 family, can selectively adsorb oxygen in a manner that defies the classical picture: adsorption sites either do or do not share electrons over a long range. Here we propose, and then justify phenomenologically and computationally, a mechanism. Charge-transfer-mediated adsorption of electron acceptor oxygen molecules in the metal-organic framework, which is a quasi-one-dimensional electron-donor semiconductor, drives and is driven by quasi-one-dimensional metal–insulator–metal transitions that localize or delocalize the quasi-one-dimensional electrons. This mechanism agrees with the empirical evidence, and predicts a class of nano-porous semiconductors or metals and potential adsorbents and catalysts in which chemistry and metal–insulator–metal transitions intertwine.
Supplementary information available for this article at http://www.nature.com/ncomms/2014/140606/ncomms5032/suppinfo/ncomms5032_S1.html
Record created on 2014-08-14, modified on 2016-08-09