Supramolecular Coordination Chemistry: The Synergistic Effect of Serendipity and Rational Design


  • Roots: Part II. Roots: Part I: Reference [42a].


Supramolecular coordination compounds bear exceptional advantages over their organic counterparts. They are available in one-pot reactions and in high yields and display physical properties that are generally inaccessible with organic species. Moreover, their weak, reversible, noncovalent bonding interactions facilitate error checking and self-correction. This Review emphasizes the achievements in supramolecular coordination chemistry initiated by serendipity and their materialization based on rational design. The recognition of similarities in the synthesis of different supramolecular assemblies allows prediction of potential results in related cases. Supramolecular synthesis obeys guidelines comparable to the “lead sheet” used by small jazz ensembles for improvisation and therefore more often leads to unpredicted results. The combination of detailed symmetry considerations with the basic rules of coordination chemistry has only recently allowed for the design of rational strategies for the construction of a variety of nanosized systems with specified size and shape.