Our research is driven by the joy of designing, synthesizing and finally constructing functional supramolecules and materials beyond the single molecule.
The research in our laboratories starts with the organic synthesis of necessary building blocks, ligands and host systems. It is followed by analysis of material properties, application in catalysis or in general, the analysis of possible application of the functional supramolecular system. Currently, we are very much interested in supramolecular systems, that react to changes in the surrounding environment and thus enable us to control their functionality.
Techniques and methods that you can learn in our group:
Modern synthetic organic chemistry: Synthesis and characterization of mostly aromatic, organic chemical compounds including standard purification techniques like column chromatography and subsequent characterization by 1H-NMR, 13C-NMR and mass spectrometry (ASAP, ESI, EI and MALDI).
Supramolecular chemistry: The chemistry beyond the covalent bond, host-guest interactions and study of the self-assembly of molecules. Analysis by DOSY-NMR, titrations and ITC.
Photochemistry of organic compounds: Synthesis and characterisation of molecules that change their geometry or other properties in the presence and absence of light, analysis by UV-VIS spectroscopy.
Modern fluoroorganic chemistry: Synthesis, characterization and the unique reactivity of fluoroorganic compounds, characterization by 19F-NMR.
Computational chemistry: Molecular modelling, simple molecular dynamics. Simple Gaussian calculations are performed by Bernd on the high-perfomance cluster in the Zentrum für Informations- und Medientechnologie (ZIM).
To construct functional supermolecules, we combine modern fluoroorganic chemistry with supramolecular chemistry. This allowed us to construct the first highly fluorinated porous organic cage.
We study synthesize the building blocks and study the formation and properties of our new cage-like compounds.
These results were just published in ChemComm and featured on the cover as well, see publications.
To be able to gain control over a function or over the formation and disassembly of a supramolecular structure, we are incorporating photoswitchable molecules into them.
We synthesize the photoswitches and assemblies and study their photochemistry with our own spectrophotometer. Currently, we are especially interested in photoswitchable systems in combination with halogen bonding.
We rely heavily on single-crystal X-ray analysis in our group to visualize obtained structures and to obtain additional information about obtained compounds in the solid state.