The Giant-Hexagon Cylinder Network—A Liquid-Crystalline Organization Formed by a T-Shaped Quaternary Amphiphile


  • The work was supported by the DFG (GRK 894), EPSRC, and ESF (as part of the SONS project SCALES) as well as by the Fonds der Chemischen Industrie and the University of Sheffield (scholarship for F.L.). We thank Dr. C. Martin for help with the synchrotron experiment.


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To the bursting point: The molecule shown forms a complex liquid-crystalline phase in which core–shell columns are embedded in a polygonal honeycomb formed by supramolecular cylinders (see picture; RF=perfluorinated end groups). Temperature-induced anisotropic swelling of the cylinders occurs, and a transition to a lamellar phase is induced by “bursting” of the cylinders at the theoretical limit of the circumference-limited expansion.