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Emerging applications of carbon nanohoops

Abstract

A cycloparaphenylene can be thought of as the shortest possible cross section of an armchair carbon nanotube. Although envisioned decades ago, these molecules — also referred to as carbon nanohoops — can be highly strained and, thus, eluded chemical synthesis. However, the past decade has seen the development of methods to access carbon nanohoops of varying size and composition. In contrast to many carbon-rich materials, the nanohoops are atom-precise and structurally tunable because they are prepared by stepwise organic synthesis. Accordingly, a variety of unique, size-dependent optoelectronic and host–guest properties have been uncovered. In this Review, we highlight recent research that aims to leverage the unique physical properties of nanohoops in applications and emphasize the connection between structure and properties.

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Fig. 1: The electronic structures of cycloparaphenylenes are size-dependent.
Fig. 2: Applications of cycloparaphenylenes in biological imaging.
Fig. 3: Electrical and optical stimulation of cycloparaphenylenes.
Fig. 4: Electronic properties of cycloparaphenylenes.
Fig. 5: Electron transfer involving cycloparaphenylenes.
Fig. 6: Cycloparaphenylenes can serve as building blocks for nanomaterials

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Acknowledgements

The authors are grateful for support from the National Science Foundation (CHE-1800586, CHE-1808791), the Department of Energy (DE-SC0019017) and the UO OHSU Seed Grant Program.

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Leonhardt, E.J., Jasti, R. Emerging applications of carbon nanohoops. Nat Rev Chem 3, 672–686 (2019). https://doi.org/10.1038/s41570-019-0140-0

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