Research & Projects

Advanced chiral surface systems
  • Understanding molecular recognition in crystallization of chiral molecules
  • Preparation of defined monolayers with helical molecules
  • Evaluation of the chirality-induced spin selectivity (CISS)
  • Self-assembly and physics of chiral nanoparticles (collaboration w/UNIGE)
https://sasp20.empa.ch/documents/10651702/10880251/helical+molecules+aligned+on+a+surface.jpg/ce4fc469-c7ea-472b-9e4c-0895a969497b?t=1594800125000
Sketch of the principle of spin filtering by helical molecules aligned on a surface (Kettner et al. J. Phys. Chem. Lett. 2018, 9, 2025)
Single molecule surface dynamics induced by tunneling electrons

By taking advantage of the spatial resolution of a scanning tunneling microscope (STM), we perform single molecule manipulation

  • Propulsion of single molecular motors.
  • Switching of molecules into different configurations
  • Induction of action modes (hopping, rolling, flipping)
https://sasp20.empa.ch/documents/10651702/10880251/Artistic+expression+of+the+nanocar.jpg/252baad5-b097-4b34-8660-6b0c7ef9278a?t=1594800125000
Artistic expression of the nanocar (Kudernac et al. Nature 2011, 479, 208)
Surface chemistry for functional extended networks
  • 2D metalorganic networks for catalysis (CO2 activation, water splitting) and new magnetic layers
  • 1D metalorganic wires as new quantum transport devices
  • Topochemistry and stereoselectivity in surface chemistry
https://sasp20.empa.ch/documents/10651702/10880251/diastereoselective+Ullmann+coupling+of+bromohelicenes.jpg/33d35ab4-7505-4659-8b0f-ef1c58bd9335?t=1594800125000
Sketch of diastereoselective Ullmann coupling of bromohelicenes (Mairena et al. J. Am. Chem. Soc. 2018, 140, 15186)