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Solar-Powered Nanomechanical Transduction from Crystalline Molecular Rotors

Authors

  • Sven O. Sylvester,

    1. Cavendish Laboratory, University of Cambridge, J. J. Thomson Avenue, Cambridge, CB3 0HE, UK
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  • Jacqueline M. Cole

    Corresponding author
    1. Cavendish Laboratory, University of Cambridge, J. J. Thomson Avenue, Cambridge, CB3 0HE, UK
    2. Department of Chemistry, University of New Brunswick, P. O. Box 4400, Fredericton, NB E3B 5A3, Canada
    3. Department of Physics, University of New Brunswick, P. O. Box 4400, Fredericton, NB E3B 5A3, Canada
    • Cavendish Laboratory, University of Cambridge, J. J. Thomson Avenue, Cambridge, CB3 0HE, UK.
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Abstract

A photoinduced solid-state SO2 isomerism drives a larger mechanical change (benzene-ring rotation) in a neighbouring ion (i.e., the system acts as a solar-powered molecular transducer). The ring rotation and SO2 photoisomerisation are observed using in situ X-ray crystallography and are controllable, reproducible, and metastable at low temperatures. This discovery presents a new range of materials for solar-energy-based molecular transduction.

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