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Definition and Emergence of Supramolecular Chemistry

Concepts

  1. Jonathan W. Steed1,
  2. Jerry L. Atwood2,
  3. Philip A. Gale3

Published Online: 15 MAR 2012

DOI: 10.1002/9780470661345.smc002

Supramolecular Chemistry: From Molecules to Nanomaterials

Supramolecular Chemistry: From Molecules to Nanomaterials

How to Cite

Steed, J. W., Atwood, J. L. and Gale, P. A. 2012. Definition and Emergence of Supramolecular Chemistry . Supramolecular Chemistry: From Molecules to Nanomaterials. .

Author Information

  1. 1

    Durham University, Durham, UK

  2. 2

    University of Missouri, Columbia, MO, USA

  3. 3

    University of Southampton, Southampton, UK

Publication History

  1. Published Online: 15 MAR 2012

Abstract

This chapter traces the changing scope in the understanding of supramolecular chemistry and its parallel, convergent evolution with nanoscale technology. Starting with the discovery of clathrate hydrates and zeolites in the beginning of the nineteenth century, key milestones such as the realization of the concepts of receptor, binding' and the lock and key model are charted. We look at the birth of the discipline of supramolecular host–guest from macrocylic chemistry and its evolution via self-assembly into its modern incarnation in the study of modular, pre programmed, and informed matter. We describe how a chemical and molecular approach is fundamental to the understanding of convergent (equilibrium) self-assembly, emergent features arising from non-equilibrium systems and nanoscale chemistry.

Keywords:

  • supramolecular;
  • definition;
  • clathrate;
  • host–guest;
  • self-assembly;
  • self-organization;
  • crystal engineering;
  • inclusion