CORDIS - EU research results

Phenylene-Bridged Grossly Warped Radical Nanographenes

Project description

Pushing the boundaries of carbon chemistry with ionic nanographene

Graphene, a one-atom-thick layer of carbon atoms arranged in a hexagonal honeycomb lattice, took the research world by storm when it was isolated for the first time in 2004. This accomplishment was awarded the Nobel Prize in Physics in 2010. A few short years later, scientists created a new form of graphene, grossly warped nanographene. This wildly distorted non-planar form is produced by the presence of five seven-membered rings and one five-membered ring embedded in the hexagonal lattice of carbon atoms, creating a molecule about one nanometre across. The EU-funded NanoRad project is now investigating a previously unknown form of grossly warped nanographene – grossly warped cationic nanographene. Scientists are exploring the self-assembly mechanisms of these ionic molecules and their potential for optoelectronics and energy storage devices.


Here, I propose the exploitation of hitherto unknown grossly warped cationic nanographenes and investigate their unique properties with a view to energy storage and luminescent devices. This Action combines aspects of odd-numbered ring (heptagonal) aromatic cations and open-shell aromatic systems, which are both underutilised in contemporary chemistry. The project will lend new fundamental insights into their self-assembly, optoelectronics, and redox chemistry, bringing them into the mainstream. Investigating these materials will also give insights into the roles of heptagonal defects in carbon nanomaterials, e.g. graphene. The primary objectives of this proposal are (1) to develop scalable synthetic routes to as yet unexplored open-shell warped nanographene ions containing tropylium cation (TP) cores, (2) to investigate and characterise their optical and electronic spin properties and (3) to carry out in depth DFT calculations.


Net EU contribution
€ 212 933,76
DH1 3LE Durham
United Kingdom

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North East (England) Tees Valley and Durham Durham CC
Activity type
Higher or Secondary Education Establishments
Total cost
€ 212 933,76