Publications Repository - Helmholtz-Zentrum Dresden-Rossendorf
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Quantum-mechanical calculations of novel heterocycles as building blocks of 2D-COFs with extended π-conjugation
For more than a decade, Covalent Organic Frameworks (COFs) have been investigated for various applications. Recently, focus is especially on 2D COFs, a field which is constantly under development. They exhibit very interesting properties, for example, for gas storage, drug delivery, or more recently for electronic transport.
COFs are generally built of organic molecules, such as benzene or naphthalene, which act as linkers, and inorganic heterocycles, such as borazine or boroxine, which are the so-called connectors. Since the first synthesis of COFs back in 2005 by Yaghi, many molecules were used to build these materials with various properties. These properties can be tuned by stoichiometry, size, and functionalization of the building blocks.
The main idea of this project is to investigate the geometries and electronic properties of novel building blocks, especially the connectors, which can be used to build 2D COFs. For this purpose, four novel inorganic heterocyclic molecules, namely B₃N₃H₆, N₃S₃H₃, B₃S₃H₃ and Al₃N₃H₆, as proposed by our experimental collaborator from TU Dresden (Dr. A. Schneemann) were used as connectors. These were expected to provide good π-conjugations within the heterocycles. These molecules, joint together with the organic linkers, are expected to offer extended conjugation over the periodic COFs, providing interesting electronic transport properties.
In this study, we used these four new heterocycle molecules together with nine well-known organic linkers and calculated their geometric and electronic properties, including the single building blocks, finite models, and 2D COFs. All calculations were carried out using TZP basis set and PBE exchange-correlation functional as implemented in the AMS-code, settings selected after extended benchmarking of methods. All of the investigated finite fragments and periodic COFs showed extended π-conjugation, indicating that the electronic properties of finite building blocks are retained in the extended systems upon formation of the 2D COF. The latter were also investigated for their band structures, which showed interesting properties: i) light electrons and heavy holes or vice versa, depending on the heterocycle molecule, which are interesting for transport applications; ii) the expected signatures of kagome (kgm) and honeycomb (hcb) lattices are presented in the band structures of COFs and the interesting points could be reached by doping or functionalization.
TU Dresden, 2021
Mentor: PD Dr. A. B. Kuc