CORDIS - EU research results

Construction of nanoscale molecular presses displaying electrochemically and photochemically induced contrary linear motion of two plates


The fabrication of molecular machines that display motion of one component with respect to another is currently attracting much interest. Most examples only display motion rather than utilise it to fulfil a particular task. The objective of this proposal is to advance current achievements by fabricating molecular machines whose motion can be exploited to perform a specific function.

This will achieved by the construction of self-assembled nanoscale molecular presses consisting of a track along which two functional plates move to open or closed positions upon external (electrochemical or photo-induced) stimulus. The motion of the plates will ultimately be used to activate specific processes, such as an uptake and release system, as well as mimics of chaperones in protein folding and light harvesting systems for photo-induced processes.

The construction of these devices utilises a range of techniques including synthetic organic chemistry, coordination chemistry and electrochemical or spectroscopic techniques. The nature of the methodology is multidisciplinary, leading to the transfer of knowledge and expertise between groups and the formation or reinforcement of European collaborations.

The diverse nature of techniques required will give the researcher valuable new skills to complement those he already possesses, which can be applied constructively to the project, leading to a strong base for professional development. The mobility will allow a young researcher to work in a centre of excellence, where both scientific and complementary skills such as research management and communication will be reinforced.

The project is highly relevant to the expanding area of nanotechnology and can make a contribution to the public understanding of the subject as well as significant technological advances.

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