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  • The oxygen evolution reaction (OER) is a key enabler of sustainable chemical energy storage. Here, the author assesses the current status of protocols for benchmarking the OER in materials- and device-centered investigations and makes suggestions for more comparable data.

    • Marcel Risch
    CommentOpen Access
  • The formation of Li dendrites at the Li/electrolyte interface at practically relevant current densities (> 1 mA cm−2) is a critical issue hindering the deployment of non-flammable and non-toxic Li7La3Zr2O12 (LLZO) electrolyte in solid-state batteries. In this comment, the authors argue for an agreement to standardize measurements of the critical current density at which Li dendrites begin to penetrate the LLZO solid-state electrolyte.

    • Matthias Klimpel
    • Huanyu Zhang
    • Kostiantyn V. Kravchyk
    CommentOpen Access
  • Attosecond science is nowadays a well-established research field, and table-top attosecond sources based on high-harmonic generation are routinely used to access electronic motion in matter at its natural time scale. Here, the authors describe a new way of doing chemistry—attochemistry—by directly acting on the electronic motion, and discuss a few key open questions in this emerging field.

    • Francesca Calegari
    • Fernando Martin
    CommentOpen Access
  • Vat-polymerization 3D printing (3DP) enables the high speed printing of precise and intricate 3D models, yet it inevitably produces highly crosslinked polymers that are not easily degradable or recyclable. Here, the author highlights recent work that realizes the formation of fully degradable polymers based on organocatalytic vat-ring-opening photopolymerization 3DP.

    • Satoshi Honda
    CommentOpen Access
  • Efforts are ongoing to address inequities in scientific fields. Here, the author provides a critical look at the practice and culture of science with calls to action to broaden participation and recognition of talented members from marginalized groups in the chemical sciences.

    • Hind A. Al-Abadleh
    CommentOpen Access
  • Liquid-liquid phase separation (LLPS) underlies the formation of intracellular membraneless compartments in biology and may have played a role in the formation of protocells that concentrate key chemicals during the origins of life. While LLPS of simple systems, such as oil and water, is well understood, many aspects of LLPS in complex, out-of-equilibrium molecular systems remain elusive. Here, the author discusses open questions and recent insights related to the formation, function and fate of such condensates both in cell biology and protocell research.

    • Evan Spruijt
    CommentOpen Access
  • To reach a net-zero energy economy by 2050, it is critical to develop negative emission technologies, such as CO2 reduction electrolyzers, but these devices still suffer from various issues including low utilization of CO2 because of its cross-over from the cathode to the anode. This comment highlights the recent innovative design of membrane electrode assembly, utilizing a bipolar membrane and catholyte layer that blocks CO2 cross-over and enables high CO2 single-pass utilization.

    • Hung-Ming Chang
    • Iryna V. Zenyuk
    CommentOpen Access
  • Adiabatic state preparation (ASP) represents an efficient way of generating correlated wave functions on quantum computers for subsequent quantum simulation. Here, the author discusses recent work that numerically studied the performance of ASP on strongly correlated molecules and presented several approaches of improving the quality of prepared ground state wave functions.

    • Libor Veis
    CommentOpen Access
  • It has been a great joint achievement of astronomy, laboratory spectroscopy and quantum chemistry to identify interstellar molecules in various astronomical environments and piece together their origins story from the fragmented evidence. Here the authors provide a sketch of what we know and motivate the asking of open questions on carbon-based molecules in space.

    • Christopher S. Hansen
    • Els Peeters
    • Timothy W. Schmidt
    CommentOpen Access
  • Strong emergence is the main form of emergence that has been defended with respect to chemistry, and in particular molecular structure. Here, the author spells out this form of emergence, proposes new ways in which one can further explore the question of emergence, and explains why investigating emergence should be of interest not only to philosophers but to chemists as well.

    • Vanessa A. Seifert
    CommentOpen Access
  • Interfacing ultrasmall metal nanoclusters (NCs) with proteins can present a dual opportunity: proteins can be used for protecting NCs, and the surface ligands of NCs may interact with proteins. Here, the authors identify and discuss remaining open questions surrounding the bio-NC interface that call for future research efforts.

    • Rodolphe Antoine
    • Dusica Maysinger
    • Vlasta Bonačić-Koutecký
    CommentOpen Access
  • The cluster approach is a very valuable technique for elucidating reaction mechanisms of enzymes. Here, the authors discuss the current status of this methodology, highlighting its strengths and weaknesses, and argue that it should be the method of choice for investigating enzymatic reaction mechanisms.

    • Fahmi Himo
    • Sam P. de Visser
    CommentOpen Access
  • Emerging experimental techniques combined with theoretical advances allow unprecedented studies of the dynamics of gas phase molecules and clusters induced in interactions with photons, electrons, or heavy particles. Here, the authors highlight recent advances, key open questions, and challenges in this field of research with focus on experimental studies of dynamics of ions stored on millisecond timescales and beyond, and its applications in astrochemistry and astronomy.

    • Michael Gatchell
    • Henning Zettergren
    CommentOpen Access
  • Recent high-pressure studies have uncovered many types of chemical bonds present in noble gas compounds. Here, by extrapolating what has been found so far, the authors discuss which future discoveries can be expected and recommend further avenues of exploration.

    • Maosheng Miao
    • Yuanhui Sun
    • Yanming Ma
    CommentOpen Access
  • In-depth understanding of the bonding characteristics of the lanthanide ions in contemporary lanthanide-based materials is mandatory for tailoring their properties for novel applications. Here, the authors elaborate on open questions regarding the bonding situation in mainly molecular lanthanide (4f) compounds, where, as compared to their actinide (5f) analogs in which covalency of the bonds is a common feature, this is still under discussion for the 4f compounds.

    • T. Vitova
    • P. W. Roesky
    • S. Dehnen
    CommentOpen Access
  • Most of our knowledge about the chemical composition of the Earth’s interior is primarily retrieved by indirect observations, experiments and calculations that are limited to simple compositions. Here, the authors present the investigation of inclusions trapped in super deep diamonds as an alternative source of a wealth of information on the chemical state of the Earth’s interior through time.

    • Matteo Alvaro
    • Ross John Angel
    • Fabrizio Nestola
    CommentOpen Access