The proposed work targets a specific branch of material science, solid metal fluorides with functionalised surfaces. It is both fundamental and applied in nature and comprises innovative synthesis, highly sophisticated characterisation, simulation/modelling and applications. The objective is to explore the upper limits of surface area, porosity, and acidity and thermal stability achievable for these materials. Highly innovative synthetic approaches, including a recently developed non-aqueous route to very high surface area aluminium (loll) fluoride, will be used to obtain fluorides and fluorinated oxides of different metals, having characteristics far exceeding those exhibited by currently known forms. Specific synthetic goals are to obtain solid fluorides with surface areas ten times higher than presently known and with extremely high Lewis acidity; particular attention will be given to aluminium-containing materials. Synthesis will be combined with broad physicochemical characterisation, including highly advanced in site methodologies supported by predictive simulation/modelling techniques, all geared to understand the underlying processes at molecular- and levels-levels. As a result, processes to control, tailor and modify target characteristics of the relevant materials for specific applications will be established. Mid-term innovation activities will be performed by the SME on two reactions of current technological importance. Replacement of widely used homogeneous Lewis acids, such as antimony (V) fluoride, by environmentally more acceptable, newly developed solid acids is a longer-term technological goal, having high economic and environmental impacts. The use of fluoride materials in areas not directly connected with fluorine chemistry, for example in industrial acid catalysed processes employing Frieda-Crafts alkylation¿s and acieration, is the third possible application.
Fields of science
- FP6-NMP - Nanotechnologies and nanosciences, knowledge-based multifunctional materials and new production processes and devices: thematic priority 3 under the 'Focusing and integrating community research' of the 'Integrating and strengthening the European Research Area' specific programme 2002-2006.
Call for proposal
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