CORDIS - EU research results

Synthesizing and Investigating the Exotic Electronic Properties of Two-Dimensional Metal-Organic Frameworks

Project description

Freeing 2D organic nanomaterials to do their thing

Large-scale approximate 2D structures – a piece of paper, for example – are not particularly exciting although they can be quite useful. A 2D material consisting of a single layer of atoms, though, is significant structurally and even more exceptional when it comes to its properties. The EU-funded EMOF project has developed a new paradigm to study one of the most interesting 3D organic nanomaterials of the last two decades, metal-organic frameworks, in 2D form on insulating substrates. The novel platform will minimise the interactions that cloud the issue when these materials are studied on metal substrates, enabling clear understanding and control of their electronic properties for a new generation of devices.


Metal-organic frameworks (MOFs) are coordination polymers synthesized by bonding organic ligands with metals or metal clusters. Recently, exotic electronic properties have been predicted theoretically for two-dimensional (2D) MOFs, such as topological non-trivial band structure (2D organic topological insulators and so on), superconductivity, half-metallic ferromagnetism and quantum spin liquid. 2D MOFs have been synthesized on metal surfaces by following the concepts of supramolecular coordination chemistry. However, molecular adsorbates on metal surfaces interact strongly with the underlying metal substrate. Therefore, their electronic properties are drastically modified.

This project will focus on synthesizing and investigating the intrinsic exotic electronic properties of 2D MOFs on insulating, weakly interacting, and tunable gated substrates by ultra-high vacuum low-temperature Scanning Tunneling Microscopy and Spectroscopy with non-contact Atomic Force Microscopy. In order to achieve these ambitious targets, I have divided this proposal into three work packages: 1. synthesizing 2D MOFs on inert surfaces; 2. structural and electronic characterization of 2D MOFs; 3. tuning the exotic electronic properties of 2D MOFs on gated graphene devices. The applicant and the host group have initial results on the topics discussed in this proposal and are thus in a unique position to make ground-breaking contributions in this area.

Understanding and tuning the growth and the electronic properties of MOFs will offer a versatile platform to realize topological electronics as well as different kinds of novel phenomenon in condensed matter physics. The bottom-up synthesis techniques guarantee a technological route which can easily be scaled-up to be used for applications. Longer term, the biggest impact is expected through applications of MOFs in dissipationless electronics and spintronics.


Net EU contribution
€ 190 680,96
02150 Espoo

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Manner-Suomi Helsinki-Uusimaa Helsinki-Uusimaa
Activity type
Higher or Secondary Education Establishments
Total cost
€ 190 680,96