Self-assembled functional materials



Our research is directed towards structure and morphology controlled self-assembling systems. Organic synthesis allows tailoring of the molecular building blocks and programming their capability for self-assembly by fine-tuning the intermolecular interactions. Those interactions are based on rather weak forces like van-der-Waals, π-π, and (weak) C-H···N interactions. Self-assembly takes place in molecular mono- and multilayers, bulk phases, and in solution. The generated assemblies represent functional units on the nanometer scale. Their functionality arises mainly from the molecular functional groups. Here, we are focussing on nitrogen containing heteroaromatic compounds.

Besides molecular self-assembly we are interested in colloidal systems like (nano)emulsions stabilized by various solid entities (Pickering-type stabilization) and structure formation therein.

News & Events

Latest Publications

Static Scanning Tunneling Microscopy Images Reveal the Mechanism of Supramolecular Polymerization of an Oligopyridine on Graphite

Supramolecular polymerization of a donor-acceptor bisterpyridine (BTP) equipped with an electron-rich carbazole unit is observed by scanning tunneling microscopy (STM) at the highly oriented pyrolytic graphite (HOPG)|solution interface. It is shown that two-dimensional crystals of supramolecular (co)polymers are formed by chain growth polymerization, which in turn can be described by copolymerization statistics. From concentration-dependent measurements, derived copolymerization parameters and DFT calculations, a mechanism for self-assembly is developed that suggests a kinetically driven polymerization process in combination with thermodynamically controlled crystallization.